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Playoff scenarios paint a pretty pic
Round 10 will define who makes the 16/17 postseason
01/23/2017 9:10 PM ET
The Bandits are one of several teams on the verge of a playoff spot.
The Bandits are one of several teams on the verge of a playoff spot. (SMP Images / ABL Media)

SYDNEY, NSW -- This is where the fun begins. 

Entering into the final round of the 2016/17 Australian Baseball League regular season, there are only three certainties regarding which teams will or will not vie for the Claxton Shield next week. The Aces have already clinched a playoff spot, and both the Blue Sox and Heat are eliminated from postseason contention.

The rest of the postseason picture is still just an outline, waiting to be coloured in by the outcomes of 12 certain matches and one potential baseball game scheduled to be played in four cities across Australia. Regardless of anything else, the Aces need to win just one game to host the ABLCS. They're the only team still in contention whose path to the PF or CS is paved with relative simplicity, assuming they win just once over the Heat in Perth. 


Of the three series being played this weekend, the Cavalry hosting the Bandits in Canberra is the most important matchup. The series could shake up the entire middle third of the ladder and create the necessity of that 13th ballgame on Monday, 30 January. If either the Cavalry or the Bandits win three games or sweep the series, the winning team will make the playoffs.

The scenario for both sides becomes a little more complex if Canberra and Brisbane split the series. After winning the two teams' series in Brisbane in Round 1 back in November, the Bandits enter the weekend with a 3-1 head-to-head advantage over the Cavalry, an advantage that would remain in the event of a series split this weekend.

However, because Brisbane and Sydney were rained out for a game in Round 8, a series split would potentially put the Bandits 0.5 game behind the Bite/Cavalry. In that situation, the game between the Blue Sox and would need to be played, and due to logistics it would be played in Sydney. The makeup game between the Bandits and the Blue Sox would be played at Blacktown International Sportspark on Monday, 30 January as a Brisbane home game. If necessary, it is currently scheduled for 2:00pm AEDT, and if played will be streamed live on powered by Bing Lee.

For the Bite, the postseason picture is a little more simple. If Adelaide win a minimum of two games over Sydney this weekend, they're in the playoffs. There are several alternative scenarios, in which the Bite could win just one game or even get swept by the Blue Sox and still make the playoffs. Those possibilities, along with the rest of the playoff potentials, are outlined in detail here.

This story was not subject to the approval of the Australian Baseball League or its clubs.