MLB standings: Magic numbers, playoff picture as of Sept. 13

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As the MLB season winds down, the pennant races are heating up and teams are making their final attempts to sneak into the playoffs.

Pundits and analysts alike are beginning to throw around the term “magic number,” which is the combined number of wins by the leading team and the losses by the trailing team that determines when the trailing team is eliminated from playoff contention. 

Here’s a look at the magic numbers for each MLB divisional race entering play Thursday, Sept. 13:

MLB standings: Magic numbers, playoff picture

AL East

First-place team: Red Sox (clinched playoff berth)

Magic number to eliminate:  
2. Yankees (7)
3. Rays (Eliminated)
4. Blue Jays (Eliminated)
5. Orioles (Eliminated)

AL Central

First-place team: Indians 

Magic number to eliminate: 
2. Twins (3)
3. Tigers (Eliminated)
4. White Sox (Eliminated)
5. Royals (Eliminated)

AL West

First-place team: Astros

Magic number to eliminate: 
2. Athletics (14)
3. Mariners (5)
4. Angels (Eliminated)
5. Rangers (Eliminated)

AL wild cards

1. Yankees
2. Athletics

NL East

First-place team: Braves

Magic number to eliminate: 
2. Phillies (10)
3. Nationals (9)
4. Mets (3)
5. Marlins (Eliminated)

NL Central

First-place team: Cubs

Magic number to eliminate: 
2. Brewers (16)
3. Cardinals (14)
4. Pirates (6)
5. Reds (Eliminated)

NL West

First-place team: Rockies

Magic number to eliminate: 
2. Dodgers (16)
3. Diamondbacks (14)
4. Giants (4)
5. Padres (Eliminated)

NL wild cards

1. Brewers
2. Cardinals