How many wins would the Brewers need in the 2018 season to secure a Wild Card spot in this year’s playoffs (that’s assuming they don’t overtake the Cubs for the National League Central title)?
Since the 2012 season Major League Baseball has had in place a playoff format whereby two teams from each league get a Wild Card berth in the MLB post-season in addition to the three division winners. That means there have been 24 teams that have been Wild Card participants since that ’12 season.
In the American League, the 12 Wild Card teams since 2012 have won an average of 89.5 games; in the National League, the 12 Wild Card teams since 2012 have won an average of 90.9 games.
Of the 24 Wild Card teams (12 in each league since 2012), 11 won 90 or more games to reach the post-season; 18 of the 24 won 88 or more games.
Most wins by a Wild Card team since 2012 was 98 by the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2015. The fewest wins by a Wild Card team since 2012 was 85 by the Minnesota Twins last season.
The Brewers are currently 82-62 (through games of September 9). They are two games behind the Cubs in the N.L. Central race, but they hold the number one Wild Card spot in the league, 2.5 games ahead of the St. Louis Cardinals, who have a one-game lead over the Dodgers for the second Wild Card spot in the N.L.
If we use 90 wins as a benchmark for making the playoffs, the Brewers would need to go at least 8-10 in their final 18 games to finish with 90 wins for the season.
Since 2012, only two teams with 90 or more wins failed to reach the post-season: In 2012, Tampa Bay won 90 games but did not make the playoffs… the next season the Texas Rangers won 91 but did not reach the post-season.
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