MLB 2015: MOVING TOWARDS THE PLAYOFFS

Published by:

The Pirates lost 3-1 to Chicago cubs on Sunday.

The Pirates lost 3-1 to Chicago cubs on Sunday.

LA Angels was trailing 6-10 when they scored five runs to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat.

LA Angels was trailing 6-10 when they scored five runs to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat.

MLB 2015: MOVING TOWARDS THE PLAYOFFS

On Sunday, it’s time for 20 MLB teams to finally bid farewell to the 2015 season. For the other gifted 10, it’s hello to the postseason. In both cases, it’s time for fans to stress about their teams’ futures.

Five of the six division titles are wrapped up, as well as three of the four wild-card spots. The playoff picture would’ve been much clearer after Saturday if it weren’t for a thrilling comeback.

Leading the Los Angeles Angels 10-6 heading into the ninth inning, the Rangers had a 99 percent chance of winning the game and, by extension, the American League West, per ESPN.com. However, they let the Angels score five runs in the top of the final frame for an improbable 11-10 come-from-behind win, one that kept both their AL wild-card hopes alive and the Houston Astros’ hopes of winning the AL West division.

“It’s probably the craziest game I’ve been part of,’’ Angels center fielder Mike Trout said, via USA Today’s Bob Nightengale, “with everything we’ve got on the line. We lose that game, we’re in trouble.’’

The AL playoff picture is clearly in a state of flux, nor is everything settled in the National League.

Below are tables showing the playoff picture and standings heading into Sunday’s finales, followed by a look at what’s at stake on the final day of the regular season.

2015 MLB Playoff Picture Heading into Sunday

American League
RoundAwayHome
Wild CardHouston AstrosNew York Yankeys
ALDSTexas RangersToronto Blue Jays
ALDSAstros/YankeesKansas City Royal
National League
RoundAwayHome
Wild CardChicago CubsPittsburgh Pirates
NLDSNew York MetsLos Angeles Dodgers
NLDSCubs/PiratesSt Louis Cadinals

American League, National League Relevant Standings

AMERICAN LEAGUE
Division LeadersWL
Toronto (AL East)9368
Kansas City (AL Central)9467
Texas (AL West)8774
Wild Card
New York Yankees8774
Houston Astros8675
Los Angeles Angels8576
NATIONAL LEAGUE
Division LeadersWL
New York Mets (NL East)8972
St. Louis Cardinals (NL Central)10060
Los Angeles Dodgers (NL West)9170
Wild Card
Pittsburgh Pirates9764
Chicago Cubs9665

NFL UK: NEW YORK JETS BEAT MIAMI DOLPHINS AT SOLD-OUT WEMBLEY

Published by:

The atmosphere in Wembley was distinctly American.

The atmosphere in Wembley was distinctly American.

There will be two more NFL matches at Wembley this season.

There will be two more NFL matches at Wembley this season.

NFL UK: NEW YORK JETS BEAT MIAMI DOLPHINS AT SOLD-OUT WEMBLEY

The atmosphere at the national stadium was rhapsodic, loud and definitively American.

Both the American and English national anthems were followed by London Calling by the Clash as the sun continued to pour down as viewers in Miami and New York started tuning in at approximately 09:30 their time.

The match at Wembley was technically a home game for the Dolphins, and they certainly were not lacking for support.

While the Dolphins were roared onto the turf accompanied by flag bearers, pyrotechnics and cheerleaders, the New York Jets players emerged onto the pitch to jeers.

Nonetheless, the sort-of visitors managed to hammer Miami Dolphins with an astounding 27-14 victory in front of a full house at Wembley to win the first of three NFL matches to be held in London in 2015.

Much of the sell-out crowd were supporting Miami but the Jets started stronger to open a 20-7 half-time lead.

Having been dominated in the opening stages, Miami rallied late on and had a touchdown disallowed before Darrelle Revis and Marcus Williams made two brilliant interceptions in the endzone with just minutes remaining.

Eric Decker and Zac Stacy then added to Chris Ivory’s opening touchdown and two Nick Folk field goals after Miami’s Jake Stoneburner had narrowed the gap.

Kenny Stils’s fourth-quarter score gave the Dolphins hope but the Jets managed to hang on.

Victory was the Jets’ third from their first four matches of the NFL season, while Miami have now lost three out of four.

A total of 12 regular season NFL match have been held at England’s national stadium since the first in 2007, when the Dolphins lost to the New York Giants.

Wembley hosts the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Buffalo Bills on 25 October, with Kansas City Chiefs and Detroit Lions to face off on 1 November.

BECKHAM BOMBSHELL: AC MILAN TO WIN UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE

Published by:

EVERYTHING WAS FINE FOR DAVID BECKHAM IN DUBAI UNTIL A REPORTER ASKED HIM ABOUT THE UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE.

He did not hesitate to answer when asked by a local reporter in Dubai who he thinks will win the Champions League this season.

“I’m going to have to say Manchester United, Paris Saint-Germain or AC Milan — one of those three,” Beckham said.

It was an acceptable reply…. Until you consider the fact that AC Milan was unable to qualify for this season’s Champions League.

Oh, and last season’s too.

Either way, it was clear that the former England and Manchester United Star is not paying much attention to the sport he played. His only chance at redemption was for either PSG or United to win at Europe.

Meanwhile, AC Milan continues to struggle as they are now placed 11th in Serie A. They had also lost 1-0 to Genoa in their latest league match, making it a third loss out of 6 matches this season.

ENGLISH PREMIER LEAGUE FULL-TIME REPORT: WEEK 7 29/09/15

Published by:

NEWS AND UPDATES

The Good: Top 5

Manchester United moves to the top spot as they clinched a convincing 3-0 victory over Sunderland on Saturday. This would not have happened if it were not for City’s two successive defeats where they could have go further up front. It was only two games before that City was ahead of United with 5 points, and the first time United was at the top of the table since Louis Van Gaal took charge.

Meanwhile, West Ham United fails to take advantage of the situation to move two points ahead after being forced into a draw on home ground. It would appear that the team have a rather curious problem of performing in front of their own fans, with only four points gained so far from a possible twelve.

Saturday, 26 September 2015
Tottenham 4:1 Man CityLeicester 2:5 ArsenalStoke City 2:1 BournemouthSouthampton 3:1 Swansea City
Liverpool 3:2 Aston VillaWest Ham 2:2 Norwich CityNewcastle 2:2 ChelseaMan.United 3:0 Sunderland
Sunday, 27 September 2015
Watford 0:1 Crystal Palace
Monday, 28 September 2015
West Brom 2:3 Everton

Arsenal and Tottenham moves up to the fourth and fifth place respectively as they each secured a victory. With a stunning 4-1 win over Manchester City and seeing an end to Harry Kane’s goal drought, Tottenham may look forward to challenge the current league leaders.

Nonetheless, their North London rivals which boasts of a much more impressive Alexis Sanchez hat-trick might prove to be a threat; though Arsenal still needs to plug up that rather leaky defence. 8 could be Alexis’s lucky number now, what with him being the 8th South American player to score a hat-trick in the Premier league and securing a spot as the 8th Premier League top scorer with 3 goals alongside Anthony Martial and Andre Ayew.

The Bad: Under the Table

Aston Villa drops into the relegation zone as Stoke City won their match Bournemouth on home ground last Saturday. The Villans would have been at a better place if they could at least secure a draw against Liverpool which would have allowed them to be only one point behind Stoke.

There were no change of luck for the other two teams (Newcastle and Sunderland) in the relegation zone, even with Newcastle managing a 2-2 draw against Chelsea somehow.

The Ugly: A Struggling Chelsea

Currently 15th in the premier league with 7 games gone, former champion Chelsea appears to be struggling. They had trouble playing against Newcastle, a team not leaving the relegation zone anytime soon. Chelsea’s rather poor performance since the start of the season was no less astonishing than Manchester City’s two successive defeats after five straight wins, but with Diego Costa’s 3-match ban verdict it could be here to stay.

Manager Jose Mourinho warns Chelsea players that none of them are “untouchable”; only consistent good performance would earn them such a status. However, he lauded Costa’s performance in the win over Arsenal, when the Brazil-born Spain striker was a nuisance and retrospectively banned for grappling with Laurent Koscielny.

Chelsea’s core players have so far struggled to hit the heights of last term and former Arsenal and Barcelona midfielder Fabregas says more is required – and not just when Mourinho demands it, as the manager did at half-time of Saturday’s abject draw at Newcastle.