With 16 games remaining on the regular season schedule, the race for the two American League Wild Card spots continues to captivate the attention of baseball fans across the country. The Athletics enter the home stretch as the favorites to secure the first Wild Card after taking two out of three from the Orioles at home. Even with this weekend's setback against Oakland, Baltimore remains in the mix to overtake the A's as it currently occupies the second Wild Card with the Angels lurking two and a half games behind.
Beyond the two top contenders, three teams (excluding current division leaders in New York, Chicago and Texas) have a healthy chance of sneaking into the playoffs by staking a claim to one of the Wild Card berths with a strong finish. The Rays, four games behind the Orioles for the second spot, are among the teams hoping to extend their season well into October and will rely on their talented young pitching staff to get there. Just behind Tampa Bay at four and a half games behind Baltimore, the Tigers may be more likely to catch the White Sox for the division title as only two games separate the teams.