Playoff hopes hanging by a thread for Orioles, Nationals

September has arrived, and the Orioles' and Nationals' playoff hopes are hanging by a thread. The Nationals are struggling to catch the Mets in the National League East. They play each other six times, including the final weekend of the season. The Mets have 22 games left against the Phillies, Marlins, Reds and Braves, which is bad news for Washington. The Orioles are battling to ... read more

Could pitching be Mets' Achilles' heel in September?

The Nationals are struggling to keep pace in the National League East, but there's still a good chance they are going to win the division. The reason: The first-place New York Mets are facing pitching issues as the season goes into the final month. In a nutshell, the Mets' pitching has gone from a strength to a concern. The Mets' young starters are running out ... read more

Nationals need strong September and collapse by Mets

The Nationals, picked to win the World Series by virtually every prognosticator across the country, are in a bind: They are going to need a strong September and a collapse by the Mets to play in October. The situation is this: If the Mets, leaders in the National League East, go 20-17 in their final 37 games, they'll have 89 wins. That means the Nationals ... read more

Stronger Schoop is primed for Orioles' postseason push

As a rookie in 2014, second baseman Jonathan Schoop's season ended with 16 home runs and a .209 average, including a .155 mark during the final month. Now, as September arrives and with his injured knee healthy, Schoop is ready to have a strong September and help the Orioles get into the postseason. He learned last year about what it takes to succeed in September. ... read more

AL wild card race is far from a runaway, with multiple clubs vying for berths

The American League wild card race is a mess. Texas has won three consecutive games to take a wild card spot for the first time since June 17. If they season ended today, they'd play the Yankees in New York in the one-game playoffs. The Twins, looking irrelevant after 1-6 trip through Toronto and Cleveland two weeks ago, are back in the hunt after a ... read more

Tyler Clippard reflects on being traded as Mets make postseason push

Mets relief pitcher Tyler Clippard remembers the first thought that ran through his mind July 27 when he was told that he had been traded from Oakland to New York. "My first thought was, 'OK, I'll have to figure out how to get all my stuff moved,'" Clippard said. "I was thinking, 'What time do I have to be there?' 'When should I go?'" His ... read more

Mets have concerns of their own as they try to hold on to division lead

The Nationals are struggling to end a six-game losing streak, and while they are 10-20 since the All-Star break, all is not lost. Not when you consider that the Mets, who have a 4 1/2 game lead in the National League East, have their own questions, likely more serious than those in Washington. The Mets got a reprieve. They were swept at home over the ... read more

Plenty of competition for Michael A. Taylor in NL Rookie of the Year race

Nationals manager Matt Williams says that outfielder Michael A. Taylor deserves to be in the running for the National League Rookie of the Year. He's right, but there's plenty of competition. The Dodgers' Joc Pederson was the clear winner at the All-Star break, but his power has faded and his strikeouts have soared in the second half. If it hadn't been for his defense, the ... read more