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D-backs' Path to the Postseason: Sept. 26, 2012

D-backs' Path to the Postseason: Sept. 26, 2012

D-backs' Path to the Postseason: Sept. 26, 2012
SAN FRANCISCO -- The D-backs' postseason chances got a bit slimmer Tuesday night, though, it was through no fault of their own.

Arizona took care of its end of things by beating the playoff-bound Giants, 7-1, at AT&T Park.

However, the team that currently owns the final National League Wild Card spot, the St. Louis Cardinals, also came away with a win. That means the D-backs still trail the Redbirds by 5 1/2 games with just eight games remaining on the schedule.

Making things even more challenging for the D-backs is that they also have to pass the Brewers and Dodgers to even think about catching the Cardinals.

Arizona does not have any games remaining against the teams it trails.

Wednesday's key games to watch (all times MST)

Dodgers (Harang, 9-10) at Padres (Richard, 14-12), 3:35 p.m. Preview >

Brewers (Marcum, 5-4) at Reds (Arroyo, 12-8), 4:10 p.m. Preview >

Cardinals (Carpenter, 0-0) at Astros (Norris, 5-13), 5:05 p.m. Preview >

If the postseason started today ...

This is how the teams would match up: Postseason Bracket »

Postseason 101

Magic numbers
To calculate a team's magic number, take the number of games it has remaining and add one. Then subtract the difference in the number of losses between that team and its closest pursuer.

Tiebreaker scenarios
A tiebreaker game will be played to determine a division winner, even if the tied clubs are assured of participating in the postseason. If a division championship tiebreaker is necessary, the head-to-head record between the clubs will determine home-field advantage. If the head-to-head record is tied, then the division record will be the next tiebreaker.

If two clubs are tied for the two Wild Card berths, home-field advantage will be determined by the head-to-head record between the clubs. If the head-to-head record is tied, then the division record will be the next tiebreaker.

Tiebreaker rules »

2012 postseason schedule
Wild Card playoff games: Oct. 5
Division Series: Oct. 6-12
AL Championship Series: Oct. 13-21
NL Championship Series: Oct. 14-22
World Series: Oct. 24-Nov. 1

Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

{"content":["path_to_the_postseason" ] }
{"content":["path_to_the_postseason" ] }