LEADING OFF: Playoff chase out West, doubleheaders in East
A look at what’s happening around the major leagues today:
WILD, WILD WEST
Playoff positions are still up for grabs in the AL West with two days left in the season. Colby Lewis (17-9) and the Rangers, who have clinched a postseason trip, can win the division with a victory over the visiting Angels or a Houston loss at Arizona. Collin McHugh (18-7) starts for the Astros. Mike Trout and the Angels, meanwhile, are a game behind Houston in the race for the second wild card.
TO THE SHOWERS
The Mets, Phillies and Orioles are scheduled to host doubleheaders, all caused by rainouts Friday. Wet weather is supposed to linger on the East Coast, though the threat from Hurricane Joaquin in the upcoming days appears to be fading. The NL East champion Mets host Washington in a split doubleheader at Citi Field, and are trying to beat out the Dodgers for home-field advantage in their Division Series next week.
PLENTY TO PLAY FOR
While the surprising Twins are still in the running for baseball’s final playoff berth, the AL Central champion Royals are looking to edge Toronto for home-field advantage throughout the postseason. Two games behind Houston in the wild-card chase with two to play, Minnesota sends lefty Tommy Milone (9-5) to the mound against Yordano Ventura (12-8) and the Royals.
ONE LAST TRY
Shelby Miller makes his last start of the season for Atlanta, hoping to end one of the most puzzling streaks in recent years. An All-Star this season, Miller is winless in his last 24 starts – he’s 0-16 despite a solid 3.77 ERA in that span. The Braves haven’t scored much for him, a big reason he’s neared the major league record of 28 straight winless starts shared by Jo-Jo Reyes, Matt Keough and Cliff Curtis. Miller’s final chance this year comes at home against St. Louis, the team that traded him to Atlanta last November and now leads the big leagues in wins.
END OF THE ROAD
Indians right-hander Corey Kluber hopes to finish his rocky season on a high note when he pitches against the Red Sox. Kluber won the AL Cy Young Award last season with an 18-9 record and a 2.44 ERA, but his numbers have fallen off significantly. He takes an 8-16 mark and a 3.62 ERA into his last start of 2015. Kluber hasn’t won since Aug. 14.