MLB holds coin flips to determine tiebreakers

Updated: September 12, 2006, 7:43 PM ET
SportsTicker

NEW YORK - Three teams currently on the outside looking in at the major league baseball playoff races will have the advantage if they do make it to the postseason.

The Chicago White Sox, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim and Houston Astros came out ahead Tuesday when coin flips were conducted by Major League Baseball to determine the home team in case of potential tiebreakers.

The Astros and Angels have the tougher road to reach the playoffs, but should either team get there, the odds tilt in their favor.

Houston, which is 4 1/2 games behind San Diego in the National League wild card race, will get a home game against four potential wild card foes: San Diego, Philadelphia, San Francisco and Cincinnati. If the Astros end up in a tie with Florida, the Marlins will get the home game.

Anaheim's only realistic hope is to win the AL West, which would necessitate making up a 5 1/2-game deficit on the Oakland Athletics. If the Angels can catch the Athletics, they will meet in a one-game playoff for the AL West crown in Anaheim.

The White Sox also got a favorable coin toss, drawing home field for either a wild card matchup with the Minnesota Twins or an AL Central Division showdown with the Detroit Tigers. Chicago sits 1 1/2 games behind Minnesota and three games behind Detroit.

Should the Tigers and Twins meet for the AL Central title, the game will be played at Detroit's Comerica Park.

In the NL, the Dodgers will have a home game against either of their nearest pursuers in the Western Division. Los Angeles leads San Diego by 1 1/2 games and San Francisco by four.

The St. Louis Cardinals, who are leading the NL Central by five games over Cincinnati, will host the Reds in the event of a tie.

The Padres would be at home against the Marlins, Giants and Reds, but would have to hit the road to play the Phillies, as well as the Astros.

The Phillies, Giants and Reds all own tiebreakers over the Marlins, while the Giants hold the edge over the Phillies.

This story is from ESPN.com's automated news wire. Wire index