MLB Playoffs: Angels Best Bet Is Wild Card

TORONTO, CANADA - SEPTEMBER 21: Vernon Wells #10 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim looks on during a break in MLB game action against the Toronto Blue Jays September 21, 2011 at Rogers Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Brad White/Getty Images)

The Angels and Rays are two games behind the Red Sox in the American League wild card race with seven games remaining in the regular season.

The Los Angeles Angels still have a chance to win the American League West, but the Texas Rangers refuse to cooperate, winners of eight of their last nine games. The Angels trail the Rangers by five games with seven games remaining in the regular season, including the final three games between the Angels and Rangers in Anaheim. The Angels need to gain at least two games in the next four days, and then sweep the Rangers.

American League West Standings
Team Record GB  Remaining Games
Rangers 90-65 ---  @Oak(1), Sea(3), @LAA(3)
Angels 85-70  @Tor(1), Oak(3), Tex(3)

For the Angels, their best path to the postseason seems to be the wild card. The Boston Red Sox are 5-16 in September, and have fallen from World Series favorite and division leader to a team with a narrow lead in the wild card race. The Angels and the Tampa Bay Rays are tied, two games back in the loss column.

American League Wild Card Standings
Team Record GB  Remaining Games
Red Sox 88-68 ---  @NYY(3), @Bal(3)
Angels 85-70  @Tor(1), Oak(3), Tex(3)
Rays 85-70  @NYY(1), Tor(3), NYY(3)

If you are a fan of chaos theory, you will root for a three way tie between the Red Sox, Angels, and Rays. Under the MLB tie-breaking scenario, the Rays have the best record among the games between the three teams, and would get to choose from slot A, B, or C, per Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times:

Club A would host Club B on Thursday, Sept. 29. The winner of the A/B game would then host Club C on a date to be determined, most likely on Friday, Sept. 30. The winner of the A/B-vs.-C game would be declared the division champion or wild-card winner.

The Angels have the worst record in games among the three teams, so they could potentially play in four cities in four days (well, Anaheim twice, but in nonconsecutive days). The American League division series are scheduled to begin on Friday, September 30, but would presumably be pushed back if such a three-team tie occurs.

For more Angels news, be sure to read Halos Heaven.

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