The last month of baseball can feature surprises, drama, and more heat for the rivalries. Some teams are almost mathematically eliminated already while others are licking their chops sensing a trip the 2014 postseason is under way. A few teams that were not even in the discussion to make the playoffs last week are all of the sudden becoming the big talk of baseball.

One interesting close race to watch is the three team race in the American league Central Division. The Cleveland Indians were not regarded as a serious playoff contender last week. However, the Indians are in the midst of a hot streak as they won 7 of their last 10 games and are nipping at the heels of the Kansas City Royals and Detroit Tigers.

Last night’s nationally televised game between Kansas City and Cleveland will resume on September 22. The game was suspended due to rain in the tenth inning but the Indians lead 4-2.

American League Central Division standings

Team with record Games back in division
Kansas City  74-61
Detroit Tigers 74-62 1/2
Cleveland Indians 70-64 3 1/2
Chicago White Sox  62-75 13 1/2
Minnesota  59-77 15 1/2


As close as the A.L. Central Division race is, the National League Central Division race is very intriguing as well. There is also a three team race here while it appears the Cincinnati Reds are just about out of the playoff discussion. The Chicago Cubs will likely be eliminated from playoff contention within the next two to three weeks. The Milwaukee Brewers are the biggest surprise in baseball as they turned the tables in the N.L. Central from being a perennial underdog to having a chance to win the division. St. Louis and Milwaukee are currently tied for first.

National League Central Division Standings

Team with record Games back in division
Milwaukee Brewers 73-63
St. Louis Cardinals 73-63
Pittsburgh Pirates 71-65 2
Cincinnati Reds 66-71 7 1/2
Chicago Cubs 61-76 12 1/2


In the National League West, the Los Angeles Dodgers lead the San Francisco Giants by 2 ½ games. The Washington Nationals are separating themselves from the Atlanta Braves with a 6 game lead in the National League East.

The American League West pennant race will likely come down to the Los Angeles Angels and Oakland Athletics as the Angels lead by five games. The Seattle Mariners appear well out of it, trailing the Angels by 9 ½ games.

The Baltimore Orioles seek to cruise away with the American League East as they lead the New York Yankees by 9 games. The A.L. East normally has a tight race so this truly an anomaly in the making.

The Wild Card races for both leagues look to have a dramatic finish.

American League Wild Card

Team with record Games back
Oakland Athletics 78-58
Detroit Tigers 74-62
Seattle Mariners 73-62 1/2
Cleveland Indians 70-64 3
New York Yankees 70-65 3 1/2


National League Wild Card

Team with record Games back
San Francisco 74-62
Milwaukee Brewers 73-63
St. Louis Cardinals  73-63
Atlanta Braves 72-65 1 1/2
Pittsburgh Pirates 71-65 2


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