Angels' Path to the Postseason: Sept. 30, 2012

Angels' Path to the Postseason: Sept. 30, 2012

Angels' Path to the Postseason: Sept. 30, 2012
ARLINGTON -- The Angels fell further back in the standings on Saturday -- without even getting on the field.

Wells Fargo

As they waited out the rain at Rangers Ballpark, which eventually postponed the game and caused a Sunday split doubleheader after a four-hour delay, Oakland won again. Josh Donaldson hit a two-run, game-tying homer in the ninth and the A's defeated the Mariners in extra innings, pushing the Angels 2 1/2 games back of the second American League Wild Card spot with only five left.

The Angels understand that in order to keep their faint postseason hopes alive, they almost surely have to sweep a doubleheader in Texas. And that's no easy task.

"We're hanging around," Angels manager Mike Scioscia, ever the optimist, said. "I feel we're laying in the weeds, and if we keep winning, I think we're going to have an opportunity to get there. But obviously, every time [the A's] win, it puts them closer to where they want to be, and the help we're looking for hopefully will come at some point."

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

Angels (Greinke, 15-5) at Rangers (Darvish, 16-9), 1:05 p.m., Game 1 Preview >

Angels (Santana, 9-12) at Rangers (Holland, 11-6), 7:05 p.m., Game 2 Preview >

Mariners (Ramirez, 1-3) at A's (Milone, 13-10), 4:05 p.m. Preview >

If the postseason started today ...

This is how the teams would match up: 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

Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.