National League Central

Cubs Playoff Updates: Magic Number, Potential Playoff Opponents

The Chicago Cubs have had a rollercoaster season so far, but they’re slowly working toward clinching a playoff spot thanks to three consecutive wins over the Milwaukee Brewers and Cleveland Indians.

The Cubs, currently holders of a five-game lead over the St. Louis Cardinals in the National League Central Division, will finish up a brief two-game series with the Tribe on Wednesday, and they’re hoping to move one step closer to their first division title since 2017.

Here is where things stand for the North Siders heading into Wednesday’s action:

Cubs’ Playoff Magic Number: 7

The Cubs’ recent winning ways have put them well within striking distance of securing a playoff spot, as their magic number stands at seven heading into Wednesday’s game against Cleveland.

With a five-game division lead, the Cubs are also inching closer to the Central Division crown, with a magic number of 10. The only reason that number is still in double digits is because the Cardinals still have several games left to make-up, including a doubleheader Wednesday against the Milwaukee Brewers, who are currently on the outside looking into the playoff race.

If the Season Ended Today….

The Cubs would still own the second seed in the National League if the season ended today, thanks to owning a tiebreaker over the Atlanta Braves. As a result, the Cubs would take on Bryce Harper and the Philadelphia Phillies at Wrigley Field in the Wild Card round if the season ended today.

The St. Louis Cardinals would play the Atlanta Braves in round one, while the 4-5 matchup would feature the Padres and the Marlins. The Los Angeles Dodgers remain in the top spot in the National League, and would take on the San Francisco Giants if things hold until the final day of the season.

What’s Next?

The Cubs finish their series with the Indians tonight, then after their final scheduled off-day of the regular season they will welcome the Minnesota Twins to Wrigley Field for their final home series of the campaign.

The Cardinals will finish up a five-game series against the Brewers with a doubleheader Wednesday, then will head to Pittsburgh for another five-game series this weekend, this time against the Pirates. Friday’s doubleheader will be the third in five days for St. Louis, as they aggressively try to make up games postponed during a coronavirus outbreak that left the team sidelined for several weeks.

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