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MLB Weekly Digest 10/2/17

The last week of MLB was about a club in the National League clinching a playoff spot for the third straight year, a team in the American League is back in the playoffs for the first time in seven years, and a manager receives a contract extension.

Cubs Clinch NL Central, Face Nats in NLDS on October 6

The Chicago Cubs clinched the NL Central with a win earlier this week, and it’s the third consecutive year they’re in the playoffs.

This is the first it’s happened for the franchise since 1906-08, per ESPN Stats and Info.

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The Cubs were the defending World Series champions after ending their 108-year title drought last year. However, it wasn’t an easy title defense for the Cubs, as they went 43-45 in the first half.

The club picked up their level of play in the second half and will be playing baseball in October.

The players on the roster can lean on the experience they gained last October and will be a tough team to dethrone.

The Cubs will face the Washington Nationals on October 6, 2017, for Game 1 of the NLDS. The Cubs went 3-4 against the Nats during the regular season.

Twins Clinch Second AL Wild Card Spot, Face Yankees In AL Wild Card Game on October 3

The Minnesota Twins are headed back to the postseason for the first time since 2010. They’re the second Wild Card team in the AL and will face the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium on October 3, 2017.

The Twins making the playoffs this season is a surprise, considering they went 59-103 last year. They’re the first team in MLB history to lose at least 100 games and qualify for the postseason the following year.

One contributing factor for their fast turnaround is defense. The Twins were 28th in MLB with minus-49 defensive runs saved last year but improved to 12th with 15 defensive runs saved in 2017, per FanGraphs.

The club will have Ervin Santana on the mound in the Wild Card Game against the Yankees. Santana went 16-8 in 211 1/3 innings with 167 strikeouts and posted a 3.28 ERA.

If the Twins can defeat the Yankees, they would advance to the ALDS and face the Cleveland Indians.

Athletics Sign Manager Bob Melvin to One-Year Contract Extension

The Oakland Athletics have signed manager Bob Melvin to a one-year contract extension, which will keep him the franchise until the 2019 season.

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Melvin was named the A’s manager in the middle of the 2011 campaign after the dismissal of Bob Geren. He’s compiled a 537-534 record across his seven years the with the club, including a 75-87 mark in 2017.

Melvin is a stable manager that gets the best out of his players. The Athletics couldn’t contend for a playoff spot this season, but things might change in 2018.

They have a young and talented roster that could make some noise and Melvin is the right man to lead them in that direction.

Author Profile

Chris Lacey
Chris is a 25-year old New Jersey native whose favorite sports team is the Arizona Diamondbacks. He previously attended Western New England College to study Sports Management. Chris has been following the Diamondbacks since he was 12. You can find him on Twitter at@aecanada12.

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