Diamondbacks playoff push: What's at stake going forward

Our finger nails are gonna be in rough shape by the end of the month...

Chicago Cubs v Arizona Diamondbacks
Chicago Cubs v Arizona Diamondbacks / Christian Petersen/GettyImages

To say it’s coming down to the wire might be an understatement.

With 13 days left in the regular season, 5 teams are battling for a wild card playoff spot in the National League.  1 of those 5 teams is your beloved Diamondbacks.

Currently, Arizona holds the 2nd wild card spot; They have a 0.5-game lead over the Cubs and Marlins.

If the D-backs want to make the postseason, they will have to finish strong in their last 11 games.  Speaking of playing strong, Arizona has won 3 games in a row and they look to make it 4 tomorrow against San Fransico.

Now that we know who is in the race, let’s take a dive into the remaining outlook for each squad.

How does the Diamondbacks remaining schedule compare to the rest of the competition?

According to the website Tankathon, the Giants have the hardest remaining schedule out of the 5 teams.  The easiest remaining schedule belongs to the Redlegs.

For the Diamondbacks, it certainly won’t be a cakewalk to the playoffs with their remaining schedule.  Tomorrow begins a 2-game home series against the Giants followed by a 3-game road series against the Yankees.

Yes, New York has had their struggles this season but they are red hot as of late.  So far in the month of September, they have the best record in baseball (11-5) thanks to their rock-solid pitching staff (3.47 ERA).

After the series in New York, Arizona will travel to Chicago to take on the White Sox and then finish the season in Houston.  The task will be tall, but Arizona has been proving people wrong all season.  Why would they stop now?

For the Cubs, they begin a 6-game home stand tomorrow which will feature the Pirates and Rockies.  After that, they will face a tough 6-game road trip in which they travel to Atlanta and then Milwakuee.

No team has scored more runs than the Braves since the all-star break thanks to sluggers Matt Olson and Austin Riley.  The Cubs pitching staff will have their hands full with that lineup.

For the red-hot Marlins, tonight begins a 6-game home stand in which they take on the Mets and then the Brewers.  To finish out the season, they will have to endure a 6-game road trip that begins in New York (Mets) and ends in Pittsburgh.

Something to keep an eye on; The Mets have won 4 of their last 5 games against Miami.

For the Reds, they open a 3-game home series tonight against the Twins, have an off-day, and then play the Pirates at home for 3.  To finish the season they travel to Clevland for 2, and then to St. Louis for 3.

Out of the 4 teams Cincinnati will face, only 1 (Twins) has more wins than losses since the all-star break.

(And) For the Giants, their playoff push will not be easy in the slightest.  Their 6-game road trip starting tomorrow begins with the Diamondbacks and ends with the Dodgers.  Then they welcome the Padres and the Dodgers for a total of 6 games.

All 3 teams they will face have above .500 records in the month of September.  The Dodgers are a 91-win team and the Diamondbacks are obviously in the playoff mix.

Players to watch for as each team makes their postseason push

Diamondbacks: OF Lourdes Gurriel Jr. - Lourdes has been on a heater this month.  In 16 games played, he has 10 extra-base hits, 13 RBIs, and an OPS over 1.000.  Guys like Corbin Carroll and Christian Walker have struggled in September.  Gurriel Jr. has picked up their slack.

Cubs: SP Jordan Wicks - The young lefty has really stepped up in crunch time.  In 4 starts this month, Wicks is 2-1 with a 2.86 ERA and a 1.32 WHIP.  Wicks has helped solidify an already strong Cubs starting rotation.

Marlins: 2B Luis Arraez - Who else but the soon-to-be batting champ?  Arraez is hitting .387 through 62 at-bats this month.  This is a welcoming sign to see for the Marlins coaching staff considering Luis’s ice-cold August (.243 OBP).

Reds: CF TJ Friedl -  3 triples in 16 games?!  That’s crazy!  Not to mention that TJ also has a 1.118 OPS in the month of September.  The athletic Reds outfielder is putting the team on his back when they need a hero the most.

Giants: SP Logan Webb - Does this surprise you?  Logan Webb is top-10 in most pitching categories this season including 4th in ERA in the NL.  In 3 starts this month he has pitched 20.2 innings and has only surrendered 12 hits, 2 walks, and 4 earned runs (1.74 ERA).

This will be a wild race to the finish...