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Detroit Tigers links: Tigers can play spoiler as MLB playoffs heat up

The Tigers could play spoiler as they head down the stretch, but that should not be their main focus.

Jason Miller/Getty Images

Entering game action on Monday, September 14, the Detroit Tigers still have a chance at the playoffs... err, mathematically speaking, that is. Ten games out of the wild card and 19 games out of the division, however, they won't be playing in the postseason this year.

Tigers fans probably don't want to hear it, but the team still has a chance to impact the playoff race. With 12 games remaining against playoff contenders -- nine of which are against the top two teams fighting for the final AL wild card spot -- the Tigers could have a major say in the initial proceedings this October. They already stopped the Cleveland Indians' momentum with Sunday's 9-2 win in the nightcap of their doubleheader. Beating the Minnesota Twins a few times to knock them out of the playoff race would be fun, right?

While I am all for schadenfreude (and random entertainment) at this point in the season, the Tigers should prioritize two things in the final two weeks: the health of their players, and the development of their young talent. The former does not entirely mean shutting down Matt Boyd for an innings limit; Daniel Norris and Anibal Sanchez are set to pitch in a split start on Wednesday, and it would be nice to see them get on track for an outing or two before the end of the season. Then there are young players like Steven Moya, who showed flashes of his potential in a start on Sunday. There are still major questions about his ability to make contact, but the Tigers need to give him a chance to fail before writing him off.

Ausmus fiasco only dims Tigers luster further - The Detroit News, Bob Wojnowski
The ambiguity (Wojo's term) of this situation starts from the top, and it's worth questioning if Mike Ilitch is meddling too much at this point.

Ten reasons the Twins are contending in 2015 - Twinkie Town, Jesse Lund
They are six games over .500 and have a negative run differential. This has been a magical season, indeed.

Yoenis Cespedes and the MVP Award - FanGraphs, Matthew Kory
The "Yoenis Cespedes for National League MVP" talk seems silly given he played 102 games in the American League this season.

Matt Harvey could piggyback starts to remain fresh for possible playoff appearance - Amazin' Avenue, Scot Cohen
The Matt Harvey saga continues. Agent Scott Boras is currently mum, but we should hear from him shortly.

Troy Tulowitzki Injured In On-Field Collision - Bluebird Banter, Kevin Papetti
That doesn't sound good.

Can the Pirates catch the Cardinals in the NL Central? - ESPN SweetSpot, Christina Kahrl
It would be nice to see the Cardinals relegated to the wild card game, even if their devil magic helps them move on anyway.

David Ortiz hits his 500th career homer - Over the Monster, Ben Buchanan
Lefty Matt Moore coughed up homers number 499 and 500 in two at-bats on Saturday.