Through 50 games in the 2021 season, the Fresno Grizzlies find themselves in second place with a .620 winning percentage in the Low-A West. Although they are three games behind first-place San Jose, the team is looking good for the playoffs.
That is because, last night Minor League Baseball announced there will be playoffs after all. It will be a best-of-five series between the league’s top two teams, regardless of division.
Fresno and San Jose are both in the north division. But, if the season ended today, both would qualify for the playoffs.
The Grizzlies have a better record than Rancho Cucamonga, the top team in the south. Fresno leads the Quakes by six games. The two teams are in the middle of a six-game series at Chukchansi Park, which concludes Sunday.
Grizzlies Winning with Hitting and Pitching
The Grizzlies lead the league in team batting average (.265) and stolen bases (96). They are last in homers (29) and middle of the pack for most offensive categories.
On the mound, Fresno has the second-lowest ERA (3.89), tied for second for Walks-Hits per Innings Pitched (1.31) and have allowed the second-fewest runs (218).
Perhaps the team’s top offensive talent is SS Ezequiel Tovar. The 19-year old Venezuelan leads the team with a .313 average, .854 OPS, 7 homers, 39 RBI and 36 runs.
Finishing Strong Matters
The 120-game regular season concludes Sunday, Sept. 19. After an off day, the playoffs start Tuesday, Sept. 21 at the lower seed. A potential fifth and final game would be Sunday, Sept. 26.
A tie in the standings would be determined by head-to-head record. If teams remained tied, the second criteria is best winning percentage overall for the last 20 games. If that still does not settle a winner, the best winning percentage overall for the last 21 games, and keep going until the tie is broken.
Fresno concludes its regular season with a six-game home series versus San Jose. With the addition of playoffs, that series takes on added significance.