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Records that could fall in final week of MLB season

ESPN.com | Updated: 2018-09-24 22:55:14

From the difference between teams at the top of the standings and those at the very bottom, to the number of balls in play (or not in play, to be specific), it has been a historic season in the majors.

Here are the records that could fall and milestones that could be passed in the season's final week.

Division title for the Dodgers?

A division title for the Dodgers would be their sixth straight. That would be the third-longest such streak since divisions came into existence in 1969.

Low-payroll berth for the A's?

The A's will look to wrap up a unique playoff berth, having entered the year with the lowest Opening Day payroll, at $66 million. No team has made the playoffs in the past 30 seasons when ranking last in MLB in Opening Day payroll.

In fact, the A's are already tied for the most wins by any team that ranked last in payroll over the past 30 years, with a whopping 94 compared to the average of 72.4 by clubs with the lowest Opening Day payroll in MLB over that span.

Can the Astros reach 102?

The Astros enter the week with 98 wins, the third most in a season in franchise history. They're on pace for 102, which would tie the franchise record set in 1998.

Red Sox win record?

-- The Red Sox need just one win the rest of the way to secure the most wins in a season in franchise history. Their 105 victories entering the week are tied with the 1912 team that went on to win the World Series.

-- Manager Alex Cora has done an impressive job in his first year. He already has the second-most wins by a rookie manager in MLB history and could move up the list this final week.

Saves record?

Edwin Díaz has an MLB-leading 56 saves this season, already the most in a season in Mariners history. He has the third most in any season since saves became official in 1969.

Francisco Rodríguez holds the record, with 62 in 2008, so catching K-Rod is unlikely, but Bobby Thigpen is second, with 57 in 1990, so Diaz has a strong chance to catch the former White Sox closer.

Yankees HR record?

The Yankees have hit 251 home runs so far and are on pace to mash 262 long balls this season, which would be second most in a season in MLB history. The record is 264 by the 1997 Mariners. The 2005 Rangers (260) are the only other team to reach 260+.

Astros pitching strikeout record -- ACHIEVED!

The Astros pitching staff leads the majors with 1,628 K's and has already broken the record for the most strikeouts by a team in a season set by the Indians last year.

So, how many 10-K games can the Astros get?

Astros pitchers have struck out 10+ batters in 30 games so far, tied for the third most such games by a team in a single season in MLB history. The Indians are right behind at 29.

Will we have more strikeouts than hits?

April was the first full calendar month in MLB history with more strikeouts than hits. June was the second. September is currently on pace to be the third. At this point in the year, we've had 49 more strikeouts than hits. If we finish with more strikeouts than hits, it'll be the first season in MLB history where there were more strikeouts than hits. It's going to be a close one.

Will Moncada set strikeout record?

Yoan Moncada reached 200 strikeouts last Sunday and has the most in the majors with 210. He's on pace for 220 K. That would be the third most by a hitter in a single season. The record is 223, by Mark Reynolds in 2009.

What about the league-wide strikeout record?

We're on pace for 41,072 strikeouts in the majors this season. That would break the MLB record of 40,104 set ... last year. The strikeout record has been set in each season since 2008.

How many games behind will the O's finish?

-- The Orioles enter the week 59½ games behind the Red Sox in the AL East, and they have three games left against Boston.

-- They're already just the fourth team in the Divisional Era (Since 1969) to be 50 games behind at ANY point in the season, and they were the first to get there before September.

-- The most games behind any team has finished in the Divisional Era (Since 1969) is 52, by the 1998 Marlins. Only three teams have finished 50 or more games behind in the Divisional Era. The Orioles will join that list.

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