The Chicago White Sox may have lost to the Oakland Athletics on Wednesday, but they still took another step toward clinching their first division title in 13 seasons.
The White Sox currently hold an 11-game lead in the American League Central, and are cruising toward their second consecutive playoff appearance and their first division title since 2008.
If the White Sox win the Central, it would be the first time in team history that they have made the postseason in back-to-back seasons.
Here is the latest update on where the White Sox playoff push stands.
Central Division Standings:
Chicago White Sox – 80-59
Cleveland Indians – 68-69 (11 GB)
Detroit Tigers – 66-75 (15 GB)
White Sox Magic Number: 14
The White Sox lost to the Oakland Athletics on Wednesday night, but they still moved one step closer to a division title as the Cleveland Indians lost again to the Minnesota Twins, leaving the White Sox as the only team in the Central Division with a .500 or better record this season.
If the White Sox clinch the American League Central, it would be their first division title since 2008.
In the race for the top seed in the American League, the Tampa Bay Rays also lost, but they remain seven and a half games ahead of the White Sox for that top spot. The Houston Astros also lost, leaving them a game ahead of the White Sox for the second seed in the A.L.
If the Season Ended Today….
With the Rays holding a commanding lead in the race for the best record in the league, it would appear that they will host the winner of the American League Wild Card Game, while the White Sox would be left to take on the American League West champion.
Currently that team would likely be the Houston Astros, as they have a five and a half game lead over the Seattle Mariners in the West. Their magic number to clinch the division stands at 18.
If the season ended today, the White Sox would end up heading to Houston for the Division Series, taking on the Astros at Minute Maid Park.
The Road Ahead
After the White Sox wrap up their road series against the Athletics on Thursday, they will head home for a weekend three-game series against the Boston Red Sox, who are currently engaged in a tight battle with the Yankees, Blue Jays, Mariners and Athletics for a wild card spot in the American League.
The Indians will look to avoid a sweep at the hands of the Twins on Thursday evening, then will stay at home to take on the Milwaukee Brewers in a three-game series beginning Friday. The Brewers currently hold the top spot in the National League Central, and they have a great chance to become the first team to clinch a division title, as their magic number stands at 10.
The Rays will have a day off Thursday before heading to Detroit to take on the Tigers in a three-game series at Comerica Park.
The Astros will also be off on Thursday, and they’ll take on the Los Angeles Angels in a three-game home series beginning Friday.