With each team having less than 10 games to play, the regular season is coming to an end. With the Rays, White Sox, Athletics, Twins, Yankees, Dodgers and Padres locked into the playoffs, there is another race to watch out for at the opposite end of the standings.
The bottom-five teams in the league all have their eyes set on an interesting prospect pool featuring Vanderbilt’s star pitchers Kumar Rocker and Jack Leiter and the Florida Gators’ youngster Jud Fabian. Heading into the last 6 or so games, the Pittsburgh Pirates are almost guaranteed the top pick in the draft with their league worst 15 wins through 54 games. The Pirates have a cushion between them and the second worst team, the Texas Rangers, who have won 19 of their 54 contests this season. The next three teams include the 20-34 Boston Red Sox who are tied with the Arizona Diamondbacks and the reigning champion Washington Nationals in fifth with a record of 21-32.
Here are each of those five teams remaining opponents:
Pittsburgh: September 22nd through September 24th vs the division-leading Chicago Cubs, September 25th through September 27 in Cleveland to take on the 30-24 Indians
Texas: On September 22nd and 23rd the Rangers take on the Arizona Diamondbacks in Arizona, September 24th through the 27th Texas ends the season with a four-game set against their in-state rivals the Houston Astros at home
Boston: September 22nd through the 24th Boston hosts the Baltimore Orioles for three games, September 25th through the 27th, the Red Sox finish out their season in Atlanta against the NL East leading Braves
Arizona: Hosting the Rangers on September 22nd and 23rd, doubleheader against the Colorado Rockies on September 25th followed by two more games against Colorado on the 26th and 27th
Washington: Doubleheader on September 22nd against the Philadelphia Phillies and two more games over the next two days against Philly at home, September 24th through the 27th at home against the 24-30 New York Mets
Bearing any of the five teams winning games for some reason, there are a few contenders to push into the bottom-five. The Kansas City Royals and Detroit Tigers are tied for last in the AL Central and are only one loss behind the Washington Nationals with 22 wins apiece. Due to tight scheduling at the end of the season, Detroit having two less games played than the Royals gives them no advantage. As of right now, Detroit will only play 6 more games and will end the season with 58 games played. In the West, the New York Mets and Colorado Rockies are 3 wins ahead of the Nationals, who are holding down the fifth-worst record in the Major Leagues.
The 2021 MLB Draft will take place in Atlanta from July 11th to July 13th of 2021. The draft order system has still not yet been confirmed after Commissioner Rob Manfred stated that the league was weighing two different options, those being combining the teams 2019-2020 records with their 2020 season record or just sticking to the norm of reverse standings.