With no room for error, SF Giants keep NL Wild Card hopes alive
Sep 26, 2023, 9:05 AM
(Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
At a time where every game holds immense significance, the San Francisco Giants kept their faint MLB Playoff hopes alive on Monday night at Oracle Park.
It might have taken a valiant effort from ace Logan Webb (9 IP, 1 R, 7 K) and a clutch go-ahead-two-out double from Michael Conforto in the bottom of the eighth inning, but the Giants staved off elimination from the National League Wild Card race for at least another day.
San Francisco (78-79) still has an incredibly difficult road ahead, one that will need to include nearly perfect play while teams ahead of them in the race like the Chicago Cubs and Arizona Diamondbacks would have to suffer devastating losing streaks over the next five days, but mathematically, the Giants are alive entering play on Tuesday.
With just five games remaining on their schedule, the outlook is still bleak for San Francisco, who hold a less than one percent chance of claiming the third and fianl NL Wild Card spot.
— SFGiants (@SFGiants) September 26, 2023
Although it seems as if the Giants are one bad day away from being eliminated from postseason contention, here’s what the rest of the season looks like for teams that are in the race for October baseball.
What is the current state of the NL Wild Card standings?
The Philadelphia Phillies are one win away from clinching the top NL Wild Card spot, something that they can wrap up as soon as Tuesday night when they face the Pittsburgh Pirates on their home turf.
While this piece is focused on the San Francisco Giants’ standing in the race for a Wild Card spot, the true chaos is taking place ahead of them in the standings as four teams–the Arizona Diamondbacks, Chicago Cubs, Miami Marlins, and Cincinnati Reds battle it out for two spots.
After previously placing a firm hold on a Wild Card slot, the Cubs have fallen on hard times as they have dropped seven of their last 11 games, although a recent three-game sweep over the Colorado Rockies has lifted Chicago back into the final postseason spot.
The Cubs’ final six games will push them to the limit as they will open up a three-game set against the MLB-best Atlanta Braves before closing the season in Milwaukee against the NL Central champion Milwaukee Brewers.
Arizona’s path isn’t as daunting, as the D-Backs will face the 60-96 Chicago White Sox before closing the season against a team that is currently in a desperate position in the American League Wild Card race: the Houston Astros.
Miami and Cincinnati have the easiest remaining schedules, as the Marlins will face the Mets and Pirates while the Reds match up against the St. Louis Cardinals and Cleveland Guardians.
San Francisco has the hardest final stretch as they will continue their three-game set against the San Diego Padres before closing the season at home against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
If the Giants are to make the postseason for the first time since 2021, it will take a near-miracle: A perfect 5-0 finish while teams ahead of them lose, lose, lose.
Anything is possible in baseball, but it’s looking like we’re days–if not hours–from watching San Francisco get eliminated from postseason contention for the second-straight season.
Upcoming San Francisco Giants Schedule
- Monday, September 25th-Wednesday, September 27th – vs. San Diego Padres
- Friday, September 29th-Sunday, October 1st – vs. Los Angeles Dodgers
End of MLB regular season
MLB Playoffs Schedule
- Wild Card Round – October 3rd-5th
- Division Series – October 7th-14th
- Championship Series – October 15th-24th
- World Series – October 27th-November 4th