The San Francisco Giants officially have their tickets punched for 2012 postseason party and the Oakland Athletics could be joining them soon despite losing five of their last seven.
The Giants (89-64) clinched the NL West on Saturday evening with a 8-4 victory over the San Diego Padres at home. And with the Washington Nationals (92-60) holding only a four game lead for the National League's finest record, it's still possible that San Francisco can make some further noise.
The Athletics (86-66) dropped the first two games of their weekend series against the New York Yankees before grinding out a close 5-4 win Sunday in the finale. Following the Los Angeles Angels' (84-69) three-game sweep of the Chicago White Sox, Oakland's stranglehold on the final Wild Card spot in the AL has shrunk to only 2.5 games.
San Francisco will be getting Monday off as a breather before the Arizona Diamondbacks come into town and try to continue their last ditch effort at that postseason. Oakland, on the other hand, will get no rest and instead heads to Texas for a pivotal four-game series with the Rangers. If the Athletics are some how able to steal a sweep, they'll be tied for the AL West lead come Friday.
For more on Giants baseball, head on over to McCovey Chronicles. If the Athletics are more your cup of tea, pay a visit to Athletics Nation.