Quantifying Hope: Postseason Odds Down, Still Strong with 15 Games Left

The Cubs are no longer near their high-water mark of 92.4% from nine days ago, but there are far worse spots to be than carrying 81% playoff odds into the final stretch of the season. One such spot would be getting eliminated from contention, which is what happened to the Cardinals on Thursday. But hey, at least their fans get to look forward to Adam Wainwright performing a concert in which he’ll debut three new original songs from his upcoming album.

That’s not satire. Not intentionally, anyway.

Back to the Cubs, who need to play much better against the Diamondbacks than they did when the teams squared off at Wrigley recently. They’ll miss both Zac Gallen and Merrill Kelly, which is good, but the offense slept through the Rockies series and desperately needs to get going again in the desert. The D-backs are just 2.5 games behind the Cubs at this point, so they have at least as much to play for.

Though winning the division is a serious longshot at this point, the Cubs can still catch the Phillies for the top Wild Card spot. Of course, that might require a little help from the Redbirds. The Phils are in St. Louis for three over the weekend, then they travel to Atlanta for three more. Their phinal 10 games are against the Mets and Pirates, who might be in the mood to play spoiler.

As we’ve been repeating for a while now, however, all that matters is that the Cubs keep winning. Or rather, that they start winning regularly again. Going 2-5 over their last seven was really hard to stomach, though seeing the other teams around them scuffling just as much provided some much-needed antacid. Having Thursday off should have given David Ross and his team a little time to recalibrate, so let’s hope we see that in action Friday night.

That odds percentage above has fluctuated a great deal in the last nine days and there’s potential for it to swing even more wildly in the next week. So will the next installment of QH be centered on the Cubs’ attempt to cling to their shot or will they have more firmly entrenched themselves in the race?

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