The Texas Rangers' playoff hopes were long gone long ago, but they've had a chance this month to spoil some other teams' postseason plans, and so far, they've done just that. With their final series of the year, which begins Thursday night against Oakland, they'll have one final chance to do that against a hated AL West rival.
The Rangers already began the ending of the Atlanta Braves' season earlier this month by sweeping them in Arlington to start this stretch of 11 wins in 12 games they're currently enjoying. They knocked the A's out of the wild card lead last month by sweeping them in Oakland, and now, they can further damage the two-time defending division champs' hopes with this four-game series to close the regular season.
The Rangers would need another sweep, which is probably unlikely, to end the A's season before postseason play begins, but they can focus on making things as difficult as possible by knocking the A's out of hosting the one-game playoff.
Remember back to 2012 when the A's ended the Rangers' two-year run of AL West titles and AL pennants on the regular season's final day in Oakland and how much that hurt? Well, the Rangers certainly remember it, and they'd love nothing more than to spoil the A's plans over these final four games.