PHOENIX -- The Astros will have to wait another day at least to clinch a spot in the postseason, even with a win tonight over the D-backs, thanks to a dramatic victory by the Angels on Saturday afternoon. They're still in the hunt for the division crown, however.
The Angels scored five runs in the ninth inning to stun the Rangers, 11-10. The Astros now trail the American League West-leading Rangers by 1 1/2 games with two remaining and lead the Angels by a half-game for the AL's final Wild Card spot. Houston can't clinch a postseason spot until Sunday, but would clinch no worse than a tie for the final Wild Card spot with a win tonight. If the Astros lose to the D-backs, Texas would clinch the AL West title.
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"Every day that we can end the day in a positive way ... nothing [bad] can happen to us if we continue to win," Astros manager A.J. Hinch said.
If the Astros and Angels finish the season tied, they would play a one-game tiebreaker Monday at Minute Maid Park, based on the Astros winning the season series between the teams (10-9). If the Astros win their next two and the Rangers lose on Sunday, they would finish tied for the division lead. The Astros and Rangers would then play a one-game tiebreaker to decide the AL West champ Monday in Arlington, based on the Rangers winning the season series between the clubs (13-6). The loser would get the second Wild Card.
If the Astros win the second Wild Card spot and finish tied with the Yankees, the game would be at Minute Maid Park as the Astros won the season series, 4-3.
Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.