The Cardinals lowered the magic number by one after they rallied for three runs in the eighth inning to top the Cubs 4-3, but the Cardinals head into Cincinnati with the number reduced to just one after the Pirates topped the Reds, 5-4 on Wednesday night.
The Royals had an opportunity to get the magic number down to single digits with a sweep this past series. Instead with only one win, that number didn’t drop much. On Wednesday, the Twins won 3-2 in 12 innings, to take two out of three in this head-to-head series.
The magic number is determined by taking 163 and subtracting the number of wins for the Cardinals (or Royals) and subtracting the number of losses for the Pirates (and Twins) respectively.