We wait for the Astros to clinch the AL West, they currently have a magic number of two.
If the Astros win tonight, they await the outcome from the Athletics and Mariners game. The Athletics will play later tonight, so even if they lose, we will not see a clubhouse celebration tonight. Unless the team decides to hang around in the locker room until the conclusion of the A’s game.
Maybe it will be better if the Athletics win tonight. That way the team can celebrate together, but I’d rather the Stros just clinch the division now. At the time of writing, the Astros lead 4-1 in the seventh inning.
With 99 wins already, the Stros are likely to finish with a higher record than any National League team. The Cubs lead the NL with 91 wins, subject to tonight’s games. With less than a week to go, it is impossible for the Cubs to get eight wins. Should the Astros make it to the World Series, they would play Game 1 at Minute Maid Park.
What about the AL?
Now, let’s switch to the American League. The Red Sox have 106 wins, so they have already clinched home field advantage throughout the playoffs. Outside of Boston, the Astros should have home field advantage against any other team in the AL. I know the Yankees are currently winning and they have 96 wins.
The Yankees could mathematically still top the Astros in wins, but a Wild Card team can’t have home field over a division winner. So the Yankees can win as many games as they want, it won’t hurt the Astros. This idea came to me via my Talking Stros cohost Brandon.
As Ryan Gonzalez mentioned, the Athletics could technically still catch up to the Astros and win the AL West. But the Astros have a magic number of two, meaning a lot has to go right for the Athletics. If the Astros win two games (winning tonight), it’s over. So let’s assume that the Astros will win the AL West.
As many have mentioned, is having home field a good thing for the Stros? Aside of tonight’s game, According to Baseball-Reference, the Astros have a 46-35 record at home in 2018. That is only a .568 winning per event age at home versus the .707 winning percentage on the road. They have a 53-22 record on the road, outscoring opponents 408 to 232. At home, they only outscored opponents 373 to 288.
I can pick apart all the pitching and hitting stats on the road and at home, but why? The playoffs are on a whole different level, what happened in the regular season goes out the door. With a loud and packed Minute Maid Park during the playoffs, the best will come out of this team. The Stros have a chance to beat their season-high win total of 102 in 1998. This is exciting.