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Predicting the 2014 MLB Playoff Teams After the Trade Deadline

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Predicting the 2014 MLB Playoff Teams After the Trade Deadline

Jonny Gomes Oakland Athletics
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The 2014 MLB trade deadline saw several big-name players switch teams, causing a couple major World Series favorites to emerge. The last couple months of the season still have to be played, however, and anything is possible. Here are the teams that will make it to play October baseball.

10. AL East: Baltimore Orioles

Nelson Cruz Baltimore Orioles
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10. AL East: Baltimore Orioles

Nelson Cruz Baltimore Orioles
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Heading into action Tuesday night, the Orioles held a four game lead over the second place Toronto Blue Jays in the AL East. Baltimore hasn't been completely convincing at times in 2014, but the team's 33-23 road record bodes well for the Orioles' playoff hopes. It isn't a lock, but expect the Orioles to emerge as AL East champions. Confidence: 7/10

9. AL Central: Detroit Tigers

David Price Detroit Tigers
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9. AL Central: Detroit Tigers

David Price Detroit Tigers
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The Detroit Tigers made a huge splash at the trade deadline, landing former Rays' ace David Price in what many have dubbed an extreme bargain. Brad Ausmus' club entered the night 4.5 games up on the Royals in the Central, and that gap should only widen with the addition of such a great pitcher. The Tigers will win the AL Central crown. Confidence: 9/10

8. AL West: Oakland Athletics

Jon Lester Oakland Athletics
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8. AL West: Oakland Athletics

Jon Lester Oakland Athletics
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The situation in the AL West is interesting, because while the Oakland A's are probably the best team in all of baseball, the second-best team just happens to reside in the same division. The best baseball in 2014 is being played in California, and the race between the A's and the Angels will be tightly-contested down the stretch. Oakland should be slight favorites due to the additions of Jon Lester and Jeff Samardzija. Confidence: 5/10

7. AL Wild Card #1: Los Angeles Angels

Mike Trout Los Angeles Angels
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7. AL Wild Card #1: Los Angeles Angels

Mike Trout Los Angeles Angels
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LA is an offensive juggernaut this season, and it's all but a lock that Mike Trout and company will be in the playoffs. The only question is whether or not the team can win the division, and with Oakland's stellar starting rotation, the chances of that happening aren't great. Garrett Richards has emerged as the staff ace, but another starter needs to step up if the Angels wants to win the West. Regardless, LA is a playoff team. Confidence: 10/10

6. AL Wild Card #2: Seattle Mariners

Felix Hernandez Seattle Mariners
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6. AL Wild Card #2: Seattle Mariners

Felix Hernandez Seattle Mariners
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The race for the second playoff spot in the American League is a total toss-up, as Toronto currently holds the position with four teams within three games. The Mariners, however, have the best road record of the bunch, and the team's starting pitching has shown flashes of brilliance. It isn't a lock by any means, but the AL West could put three teams in the playoffs this year. Seattle squeaks in on the final day of play. Confidence: 2/10

5. NL East: Washington Nationals

Anthony Rendon Washington Nationals
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5. NL East: Washington Nationals

Anthony Rendon Washington Nationals
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The NL East is a mess right now, as the Atlanta Braves are in the midst of a serious slide, but the Nationals don't seem to want to take hold of the division. Washington undoubtedly has the edge over the Braves right now, but head-to-head meetings down the stretch between the two teams will determine the division winner. It'll be close, but Washington edges out Atlanta to win the East. Confidence: 4/10

4. NL Central: St. Louis Cardinals

Matt Carpenter St. Louis Cardinals
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4. NL Central: St. Louis Cardinals

Matt Carpenter St. Louis Cardinals
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There are four teams within five games of each other in the NL Central, as the Milwaukee Brewers currently lead St. Louis by a single game. The Reds are faltering, however, and the injury to Andrew McCutchen seriously hurts Pittsburgh's postseason chances. The Cardinals' rotation looks deep enough to make a deep postseason run, so expect the NL Central powerhouse to edge out Milwaukee. Confidence: 5/10

3. NL West: Los Angeles Dodgers

Clayton Kershaw Los Angeles Dodgers
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3. NL West: Los Angeles Dodgers

Clayton Kershaw Los Angeles Dodgers
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It's a two-horse race in the NL West, with bitter rivals LA and San Francisco battling it out. Both teams are solid on the road, but the Dodgers' rotation should give them a slight advantage down the stretch. The Giants will probably make the playoffs as well, but expect the Dodgers to win the NL West crown on the strength of Clayton Kershaw's arm and the recent resurgence of Matt Kemp. Confidence: 6/10

2. NL Wild Card #1: San Francisco Giants

Buster Posey San Francisco Giants
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2. NL Wild Card #1: San Francisco Giants

Buster Posey San Francisco Giants
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San Francisco has the best road record by far of the NL Wild Card contending teams, and that will be a decided advantage down the stretch. The Giants' bolstered the starting rotation by adding Jake Peavy at the deadline, enhancing the team's playoff chances. The National League Wild Card race is tight, and the Giants have just as much of a chance to win the division as they do of not making the playoffs at all. Confidence: 6/10

1. NL Wild Card #2: Atlanta Braves

Freddie Freeman Atlanta Braves
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1. NL Wild Card #2: Atlanta Braves

Freddie Freeman Atlanta Braves
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The Braves are in the midst of a major slump, having lost six in a row heading into Tuesday night's showdown against King Felix and the Seattle Mariners. Atlanta usually finds a way to make it to October, even if the team finds minimal success once it gets there. The Braves' starting rotation has been better than expected, and the offense will score just enough runs to squeak into the second NL Wild Card spot. Confidence: 2/10

Jacob Dennis is an MLB writer at RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter, “Like” him on Facebook, and add him to your network on Google.