The Los Angeles Angels will make the playoffs. This is pretty clear by now. With 90 wins and 60 losses, the team leads the AL West by about 8 games, and its playoff prospects are secure.

Normally, the regular season games played during this time of year don’t make sense for a team in the situation the Angels are in. Typically, a team can rest its top players, giving bench players, and even some minor leaguers, a chance to play in the final games of the regular season. After all, it benefits the team to rest its best players for the playoffs, not to mention the elimination of risk with respect to any injuries that could kill a team’s postseason prospects.

In the case of the Angels, however, things are different for the moment. The team is in the middle of a three-game series against the New York Yankees leading the American League East. While this is the last regular series between the two teams, there is a very realistic chance that the New York Yankees and the Los Angeles Angels will meet in the playoffs.

Many experts predict that this could be a preview of the ALCS, which indeed seems possible. As a result, the stakes are high in this series and the Angels will be looking for sixteen with every chance to win every game played.

The team started on a great note in Game 1 of the series, with a 5-2 victory over the Yankees. More importantly, starting pitcher Joe Saunders was extremely efficient.

The team will need all the pitching help it can get against the dangerous Yankees bats.