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There's just a week left in September, and almost all of the playoff races are still at issue.
We enter the final week of September ...
- Checking in on the playoff races with fewer than 10 games to go: the Orioles are a game behind the Yankees in the AL East, but the O's hold the first Wild Card spot. The second spot is held by the A's, who are up 2.5 on the Angels, and 3.5 on the Rays. The Rangers have a four-game lead in the West, and the White Sox have a one-game lead over the Tigers in the Central, despite losing five in a row. In the NL, the East belongs to the Nats, the Central to the Reds, and the West to the Giants. The top Wild Card spot is going to the Braves, but the second spot is still up for grabs. The Cardinals currently hold the spot by 2.5 over the Brewers, 3.0 over the Dodgers, and 4.5 over the Diamondbacks.
- Miguel Cabrera is on the verge of the first Triple Crown in 45 years, leading the AL in batting average and RBI, and tied for the lead in homers. FanGraphs looks at what that achievement really means - is it all that impressive? Does it make him an MVP? He trails Mike Trout in WAR by a considerable margin.
- BJ Upton is doing his best to ensure that he gets paaaaaaaaaid in the offseason. He just hit his 8th homer in his last 14 games. He's got 26 on the year now, and a .760ish OPS on the year. With good defense in center field, and age on his side (he just turned 28), some team is going to go nutty on him.
- Marc Normandin looks at the excellent rookie crop this year, even if you don't consider Mike Trout and Bryce Harper. He's right - there are a ton. Yes, Anthony Rizzo comes in for a mention.
- Ichiro looked to be on his last legs in Seattle, but has had a resurgence since coming to New York - particularly in the power department. New Yankee Stadium is especially kind to lefties, and Ichiro, who'd hit just four homers all year (493 PA) with the Mariners before being dealt to the Yankees in late July, has five homers with the Yankees (193 PA), all at home.
- Dylan Bundy made his big league debut and retired both of the batters he faced ... after he finally found his glove.
- Grant Brisbee reviews Clint Eastwood baseball flick 'Trouble with the Curve,' and he says it's a stinker, which is a total shock based on the super awesome previews (/s). It sounds like it would be particularly galling to anyone who knows anything about baseball.