There is a possibility that the Atlantic League’s playoff teams could be finalized on Sunday, September 11. If Gastonia wins one game vs. Lexington, if High Point defeats Kentucky, and Lancaster loses at Charleston, then High Point and Lancaster would earn playoff spots.
Magic Numbers: Gastonia has a magic number to win the second half South Division of just one. The Honey Hunter and Lexington Legends were rained out on Saturday and will play a 2:15 p.m. doubleheader on Sunday. Gastonia is 38-20 in the second half with eight games remaining. Lexington is 29-28 and in second place. One Gastonia win gives the Honey Hunters a repeat of the South Division after having won the first half. And with a repeat division winner, that would necessitate the need for a Wild Card team to enter the playoffs.
Lancaster’s magic number to win the North is two with any combination of two Barnstormer wins and Southern Maryland losses giving the second half North Division title to the ‘Stormers. The Blue Crabs finish their three-game series at York on Sunday at 2 p.m. A Lancaster win at Charleston clinches at least a tie for the North with Southern Maryland but, since the Blue Crabs already have a spot in the playoffs, the ‘Stormers would also be in.
Wild Card Race: Following games of Saturday, September 10, High Point remains in the top spot in the ALPB Wild Card race. The Rockers have a 1.5 game lead over Lancaster and a 6.5 game lead over the Wild Health Genomes. If Gastonia defeats Lexington to repeat as South Division champion, the Atlantic League would have a Wild Card team in the playoffs. The Rockers need just one win on Sunday to eliminate Kentucky from the playoff race.
What Is The Wild Card?: The Wild Card team is the ALPB club not already in the playoffs that has posted the best full-season record. Southern Maryland has secured a playoff spot by winning the North Division first half race while Gastonia won the first half South pennant. Should either Southern Maryland or Gastonia repeat as second half champions, it would allow a Wild Card team to gain entrance to the playoffs.
Playoff Schedule: Gastonia will open the South Division Championship Series at home on Tuesday, September 20 and Wednesday, September 21. Southern Maryland will play the first two games of the North Division Championship Series on the road and then return home for game 3 and possibly games 4 and 5 starting on Friday, September 23.
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