Rangers' Path to the Postseason: Sept. 13, 2012

Rangers' Path to the Postseason: Sept. 13, 2012

Rangers' Path to the Postseason: Sept. 13, 2012
ARLINGTON -- The Rangers reduced their magic number to win the American League West to 18 with a 5-2 victory over the Indians on Wednesday night at Rangers Ballpark.

In addition to improving to an American League-best 85-57, the Rangers hit one attendance milestone and are one night away from achieving another.

The Rangers drew 36,001 fans to the ballpark on Wednesday, giving them a season total of 2,967,041. That breaks the attendance record of 2,946,949 set last season.

The Rangers have 10 home games left, and on Thursday night they will go over 3 million for the first time in club history.

With Oakland's 4-1 win over the Angels on Wednesday, the Rangers lead the second-place A's by three games and the third-place Halos by 8 1/2.

Today's key games to watch (all times ET)

A's (Anderson, 4-0) at Angels (Weaver, 16-4), 3:35 p.m. Preview >

Rays (Hellickson, 8-10) at Orioles (Chen, 12-9), 12:35 p.m. Preview >

Yankees (Hughes, 14-12) at Red Sox (Doubront, 10-8), 7:10 p.m. Preview >

If the postseason started today ...

AMERICAN LEAGUE
Wild Card: Second Wild Card at First Wild Card
Division Series: Second-best AL record vs. Third-best AL record | Best AL record vs. Wild Card winner

NATIONAL LEAGUE
Wild Card: Second Wild Card at First Wild Card
Division Series: Second-best NL record vs. Third-best NL record | Best NL record vs. Wild Card winner

Postseason Bracket »

Postseason 101

Magic numbers
To calculate a team's magic number, take the number of games it has remaining and add one. Then subtract the difference in the number of losses between that team and its closest pursuer.

Tiebreaker scenarios
A tiebreaker game will be played to determine a division winner, even if the tied clubs are assured of participating in the postseason. If a division championship tiebreaker is necessary, the head-to-head record between the clubs will determine home-field advantage. If the head-to-head record is tied, then the division record will be the next tiebreaker.

If two clubs are tied for the two Wild Card berths, home-field advantage will be determined by the head-to-head record between the clubs. If the head-to-head record is tied, then the division record will be the next tiebreaker.

Tiebreaker rules »

2012 postseason schedule
Wild Card playoff games: Oct. 5
Division Series: Oct. 6-12
AL Championship Series: Oct. 13-21
NL Championship Series: Oct. 14-22
World Series: Oct. 24-Nov. 1

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.