MLB Playoff Bracket if season ended today: Braves, Orioles dominate with surprise wild card

Here is what the MLB postseason bracket would look like if the season were to end today, Sept. 12.
Atlanta Braves v Philadelphia Phillies - Game Two
Atlanta Braves v Philadelphia Phillies - Game Two / Rich Schultz/GettyImages

The clock is ticking in MLB. By the end of the day on Oct. 1, the regular season reaches its conclusion. From there, it is postseason baseball time, starting on Oct. 3 with Game 1 of all four Wild Card series.

As of this writing (Sept. 12), there is only one team that has clinched a playoff berth, and that is the Atlanta Braves. The NL East powerhouse has a 94-50 record and a commanding lead over their opposition in the division. The Phillies are in second place, 15 games behind the Braves. However, Atlanta has not yet clinched the division title.

Meanwhile, the Baltimore Orioles lead the way in the American League with a 91-52 record. While they have a significant lead over the Houston Astros and Minnesota Twins for the top seed in the league, the AL East rival Tampa Bay Rays are just three games behind them.

How would the MLB postseason bracket look like if the season ended today? Let's take a look at it by the American and National League sides of the bracket.

MLB playoff bracket: American League bracket if the season ended today

  1. Baltimore Orioles (91-52)
  2. Houston Astros (82-63)
  3. Minnesota Twins (75-69) vs. 6. Texas Rangers (79-64)
  4. Tampa Bay Rays (89-56) vs. 5. Toronto Blue Jays (80-64)

The Orioles and Astros would both have first-round byes if the season were to end today.

As for the matchups, the Twins would face the Texas Rangers, the latter of whom spiraled out of control recently, losing six of their last 10 games as of this writing. Then, the Rays would face off against the rival Toronto Blue Jays, who have broken away from the pack, albeit slightly, for the second Wild Card spot.

The Seattle Mariners are just outside of the final Wild Card spot by half a game. The Boston Red Sox are technically still in it but are six games back of the Rangers for the last Wild Card spot.

MLB playoff bracket: National League bracket if the season ended today

  1. Atlanta Braves (94-50)
  2. Los Angeles Dodgers (87-56)
  3. Milwaukee Brewers (80-63) vs. Arizona Diamondbacks (76-69)
  4. Philadelphia Phillies (79-65) vs. 5. Chicago Cubs (78-67)

The Braves and the Dodgers, both teams who look like the favorites to win the World Series and have multiple NL MVP candidates on their squads, hold first-round byes.

As for the two Wild Card series, the Brewers would face off against the Arizona Diamondbacks, while the Philadelphia Phillies would take on the Chicago Cubs.

The Wild Card situation could look entirely different by the end of the season. The Miami Marlins (74-70), San Francisco Giants (74-70), and Cincinnati Reds (74-71) are all within two games of the final Wild Card spot. Meanwhile, the Phillies and Cubs don't have such commanding leads for the top two Wild Card spots. So in the next couple of weeks, the fourth, fifth, and sixth leads could be entirely different.

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