Houston Astros Magic Number, playoff odds after embarrassing series loss to Oakland

Losing two out of three to the lowly Athletics was not great for the Astros'

Sep 6, 2023; Arlington, Texas, USA; Houston Astros starting pitcher Justin Verlander (35) pitches
Sep 6, 2023; Arlington, Texas, USA; Houston Astros starting pitcher Justin Verlander (35) pitches / Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

While the Houston Astros managed to avoid a sweep, losing a series to the Oakland Athletics was not ideal when it comes to the Astros' playoff ambitions. Houston really needed to take advantage of this soft spot in their schedule with Oakland followed by a three game series with the Royals. They can take solace in the fact that the Astros still have a 0.5 game lead in the AL West, but Texas is on a six game win streak and Houston needs to get going soon to hold them off.

Nevertheless, the season is winding down and that means it is time to again look at the Astros' magic number and current playoff odds. Spolier alert: the Astros are still in good shape overall.

Houston Astros Magic Number and Playoff Odds

As of 9/15, the Astros magic number is 16 to win the AL West. Things are definitely helped by the fact that the Astros have dominated the Rangers head to head this season, but there is still a lot of baseball left and the Astros have some work to do to pull this thing out.

As for their magic number to clinch a playoff spot, that gets a little more complicated because of the number of teams that could potentially get in. However, it looks like the magic number is 11 for clinching at least the third wild card spot in the American League.

However, the playoff odds bring good news for the Astros. Fangraphs currently has the Astros with a 96.8% chance of making the playoffs and a 62.9% chance of winning the division despite the close current margin. Baseball-Reference is a little more bearish on their odds overall with a 94.1% of making the playoffs and 55.7% chance to win the division, but still give them good odds overall.

It is going to be a race down to the last week of season, folks, so strap in and prepare yourselves for a wild ride.

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