This is the final full week of the regular season for the minor leagues, and we currently have a number of teams fighting for playoff berths. I'll go from top to bottom.
AAA - The Beavers are in third place (68-67) behind Salt Lake (Angels) and Tacoma (Mariners). The Salt Lake team got off to a blistering start and never relinquished the lead. There won't be playoffs this year in Portland, as the Beavers are 10 games back. However, considering how much we've been forced to take from them this year and how young a team they have, it's been a very good season.
AA - San Antonio (68-63 overall) is fighting for a wild card spot with Midland (A's) in the Texas League. The Missions are currently 2.5 games behind Midland with nine to play. These two teams are very similar, sharing the top five spots in individual ERA and the top two spots in terms of team walks.
HA - This one is a little complicated for Lake Elsinore. Lancaster won the first half, so they have an automatic bid, and they are also leading the second half by 3.5 games. If they hold on in the second half, there will be two wild card spots up for grabs. Lake Elsinore currently holds the top position for those spots with a three game lead and seven to play.
LA - Ft. Wayne (68-64 overall) is also battling for a wild card spot. They're three games back with eight to play. They won two big games over the weekend against the Lansing Lugnuts, who sit just ahead of them in the standings.
SA - Short-season Eugene has roared back from a slow start to sit one game out of first with 10 to play. They still have four more starting tonight against the first place club from Salem-Keizer (Giants). This one could get interesting.
R - Rookie League Arizona has also caught fire and is just a half game back with five to play in the second half. They're 17-5 in the second half and 31-20 overall.
DSL - The Dominican Summer League concluded with a 2nd place finish for the Padres.
As frustrating as it has been at the Major League level this year, it has been nice to see each and every affiliate performing well and competing for a chance to continue their respective seasons. After all, winning can become a habit.