Dodgers and Padres make playoffs

The Los Angeles Dodgers and the San Diego Padres, both of the National League West division, clinched places in the Major League Baseball playoffs with wins on Saturday.

    Dodgers pitcher Takashi Saito closed against the Giants

    With one game remaining in the regular season, the Dodgers and Padres are tied with equal win/loss records of 87-74 at the top of the National League West, where one of the two teams will become division champions while the other will take a wildcard place in the playoffs.

     

    Veteran Dodgers pitcher Greg Maddux recorded his 15th win of the season while J.D. Drew and Julio Lugo scored two runs each for Los Angeles as they defeated the San Francisco Giants 4-2.

     

    Maddux pitched seven innings allowing just two runs, while Jonothan Broxton and Japanese right-hander Takashi Saito closed out the match for the Dodgers.

     

    For the Padres, starting pitcher David Wells threw six scoreless innings while Mike Cameron hit a home run in the fifth to help San Diego defeat the Arizona Diamondbacks 3-1 to secure their spot in the postseason.

     

    The Dodgers and Padres complete their regular seasons in San Francisco and Arizona respectively on Sunday, and if both teams are still tied the Padres will be crowned division champions based on head-to-head record, while the Dodgers will be the wild card team.

     

    Meanwhile, the final playoff berth up for grabs will be taken by either the St Louis Cardinals or the Houston Astros, as the battle for the National League Central division title comes down to the final day of the regular season.

     

    The Astros must defeat the Atlanta Braves in their match on Sunday, and also hope that the Cardinals lose to the Milwaukee Brewers at Busch Stadium to have any chance of making the playoffs.

     

    If the Astros lose, the Cardinals will win the National League Central title.

     

    Seven out of eight teams have booked their places in the playoffs as the Dodgers and Padres join the New York Mets, New York Yankees, Oakland Athletics, Detroit Tigers and Minnesota Twins in the quest for the 2006 World Series championship.

    SOURCE: Aljazeera + Agencies


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