Oakland, Atlanta clinch division titles, St. Louis earns wild card
The Associated Press
The Atlanta Braves, Oakland Athletics and St. Louis Cardinals can start planning for the playoffs.
All three teams clinched postseason spots Sunday.
The Braves won their first NL East crown since 2005 and the Athletics took their second straight AL West title. The Cardinals are still trying to win the NL Central, but are assured of at least a wild-card berth.
The A’s clinched their 16th division crown and 25th postseason appearance when Texas lost 4-0 at Kansas City.
With a week left in the regular season, the race for the two AL wild-card spots is still tangled. Tampa Bay is a half-game ahead of Cleveland, with Texas 1½ games behind the Indians.
• Humble as ever, Mariano Rivera began his special day by paying tribute to a Hall of Famer.
The New York Yankees retired Rivera’s No. 42, and the great reliever honored Jackie Robinson during a ceremony in Yankee Stadium’s Monument Park.
Robinson’s No. 42 was retired throughout the major leagues in 1997 on the 50th anniversary of the day the Brooklyn Dodgers second baseman broke baseball’s color barrier. Players wearing 42 at the time were grandfathered.
“It is a great pleasure and honor for me to be the last player to ever wear number 42,” Rivera said during the 50-minute ceremonies before the last regular-season day home game of his 19-season career.
• Philadelphia has removed the “interim” tag on Spokane native Ryne Sandberg, 54, and said he will return as manager in 2014 with a three-year contract through 2016 and a club option for 2017.
• The Washington Nationals honored Davey Johnson, paying tribute to the retiring 70-year-old manager during a 15-minute celebration. Last season, Johnson guided the team to its only playoff appearance.