With end of the regular season rapidly approaching, 13 teams entered Thursday’s games within five games of the 10 playoff spots. On a day where most of the teams relevant to the close races were idle, the Boston Red Sox finally locked up the American League East with a win over the Yankees.
Here is where the various competitive playoff races stand after Thursday’s action:
American League West
The Houston Astros lead the Oakland Athletics by three and a half games.
The Athletics took advantage of the Astros being idle to creep a half-game closer with a 21-3 pummeling of the Los Angeles Angels. Picking an offensive star is hard in a game in which five different players drove in two or more runs and eight had two or more hits, so perhaps the credit should go to Edwin Jackson and the team’s pitching staff for keeping their concentration despite the enormous lead and holding Los Angeles to five…