It's September 15th. The end of the season is just 2 ½ weeks away. The White Sox are sitting just one game ahead of the Tigers, which leaves the magic number at 19 games to clinch the division title. It seems so close but yet so far. Lets take a look at the remaining schedule.
September 15-16 @ Twins:
The Sox are sending Francisco Liriano and Jake Peavy to the mound, while the Twins are going with Samuel Deduno and Scott Diamond. The Sox have been good against the Twins this year and I expect that to continue. Today we need a good start out of Liriano. I think he gets it done. Peavy should win his start too. Result: 2-0
September 17 vs. Tigers:
The makeup game from Thursday evening features Jose Quintana vs. Doug Fister. Quintana had been getting hammered recently, but found his stuff in the lone victory against the Tigers on Monday. The makeup cancels the only off-day the two teams had left on the schedule. I am going to give the Sox this game, as I had them splitting the four game series. Result: 1-0
September 18-20 @ Royals:
The Royals have had our number all year long. Nothing is going to change now. The Sox are sending Gavin Floyd to the mound on Tuesday against Luke Hochevar. Then we get Luis "Three Fingers" Mendoza and Bruce "Cy" Chen. Result: 1-2
September 21-23 @ Angels
The Sox end their road trip with a trip to Southern California for a date with the Angels. They have played the Angels pretty well this season, going 3-2 against them. They will be good games, but I'm going to give the Angels the series. Result: 1-2
September 24-26 vs. Indians
We are 8-4 against the Indians this year, and I don't see things changing now. I believe the Sox will sweep this series from the Indians. Result: 3-0
September 27-30 vs. Rays
The Sox are 3-0 vs. Tampa this year, but the Rays are in their usual September post-season push. These are the final four home games of the year. I think we split them. Result: 2-2
October 1-3 @ indians
We close out the regular season with three against the Tribe in Cleveland. I think the Indians take game one of the series, but the Sox win the last two. Result: 2-1
That would leave us 12-7 in our last 19 ballgames. In my scenario, our record would be 89-73. The Tigers would have to go 14-5 to win the division or 13-6 to force a game 163, which would be played in Detroit. Here is their schedule, with how I think they will do in each series.
September 15-16 @ Indians (2-0)
September 17 @ White Sox (0-1)
September 18-20 vs. Athletics (1-2)
September 21- 23 vs. Twins (3-0)
September 24-27 vs. Royals (3-1)
September 28- 30 @ Twins (2-1)
October 1-3 @ Royals (2-1)
That would leave them 13-6, tied with the White Sox for the division. On to Detroit we go to find out who finally wins the Central division. Or maybe since neither team seems to want to win, they will play to a tie after 20 innings and just say "forget it" and go home.
What do you guys think? Where am I missing the boat?