The Toronto Blue Jays haven't officially punched their ticket to the playoffs yet, but a second consecutive excellent weekend put them in prime position to secure a wild-card berth.
Toronto took two out of three games from the Tampa Bay Rays at dreaded Tropicana Field, capped by a 9-5 victory in Sunday's series finale that saw Vladimir Guerrero Jr. slug two home runs and George Springer record a wild inside-the-park homer.
While the Blue Jays were savouring their wins, they watched the perfect scenario unfold on the out-of-town scoreboard. The Texas Rangers swept the Seattle Mariners, while the Houston Astros shockingly dropped three straight to the Kansas City Royals.
By the time the dust settled, Toronto sat two games up on Houston for the American League's second wild-card spot, with Seattle half a game behind the Astros and on the outside looking in. After the fortuitous weekend, FanGraphs has the Blue Jays' playoff odds at a whopping 97.6%.
The Blue Jays have six games remaining in their regular season, with all those contests coming at Rogers Centre. The New York Yankees head north of the border for three games starting on Tuesday, then Toronto closes out its campaign with three against the Rays.
Here's a look at the standings entering Toronto's off day on Monday, plus a zip around the wild-card picture:
Yesterday's result: The Rangers reclaimed the AL West lead with a massive sweep of the rival Mariners. Marcus Semien homered twice, while Corey Seager added one of his own to power Texas to a 9-8 victory in the series finale.
What's next: Texas will look to bolster its hopes of winning the division when it begins a three-game set with the Los Angeles Angels on Monday. Jon Gray (8-8, 4.22 ERA) gets the nod for the Rangers against Angels lefty Patrick Sandoval (7-13, 4.19 ERA).
Playoff odds: 97.1%
Tiebreaker situation with Blue Jays: Texas owns tiebreaker thanks to head-to-head record.
Yesterday's result: The Astros' September struggles continued as they lost their third consecutive game to the lowly Royals. The Astros went a combined 2-7 against the Royals and Oakland Athletics over the past two weeks to fall out of first place in the AL West. Houston only has road contests remaining before the end of the regular season, meaning the team posted its first losing record at home (39-42) since 2014.
What's next: Houston travels to Seattle and will have to get back on track in a hurry or risk falling out of a playoff spot entirely. The pitching matchup in Monday's opener is must-watch television as Justin Verlander (11-8, 3.44 ERA) gets the ball for the Astros opposite Mariners ace Luis Castillo (14-7, 3.06 ERA)
Playoff odds: 60.2%
Tiebreaker situation with Blue Jays: Toronto owns tiebreaker thanks to head-to-head record.
Yesterday's result: The Mariners laid an egg in their crucial three-game set with the Rangers. Seattle starter Bryan Woo was touched up for six runs in 3.1 innings on Sunday and the offence couldn't complete a late comeback.
What's next: See Astros section.
Playoff odds: 45.1%
Tiebreaker situation with Blue Jays: Seattle owns tiebreaker thanks to a better record within its division.