Wild-card bests and worsts

Updated: July 28, 2003, 11:28 AM ET
By Jim Baker | ESPN Insider
In the wake of the Phillies getting swept by the Marlins on Sunday, it is looking as though this year's wild-card entry from the National League will be of the lower-end variety. The Phils are hanging onto their lead in the race but with a winning percentage barely over .550. They are followed closely at this juncture by Florida, Arizona, St. Louis and Los Angeles. Hanging back in hailing distance are Colorado, Montreal and the Chicago. For the latter three teams, it would take a Herculean effort to blow by eight other opponents at this late date.

One of the premises of the wild card is that it will reward some richly deserving team that would have made the playoffs otherwise if not for the presence of a monster club in its own division. This has been the case in the American League West the last two years.

The three best wild-card teams:
Jim Baker is an author at Baseball Prospectus and a frequent contributor to Page 2. You can e-mail Jim at