The Chattanooga Lookouts will begin their final homestand of the season Tuesday night when they welcome the Mississippi Braves to AT&T Field.
It may not, however, serve as the end.
"It's the last homestand, but whether we get free baseball is the question," Lookouts president Rich Mozingo said Monday. "We didn't even discuss playoffs until a month-and-a-half ago. That's when they put this thing together."
When the Lookouts indeed began their 120-game schedule in early May as residents of the North Division of the Double-A South, there were no plans for playoffs. Yet Major League Baseball, which now operates the minor leagues, then decided to have the teams with the two best records vie in a best three-of-five championship series.
Mississippi of the South Division is assured one of the spots, having assembled a 65-42 record entering Chattanooga, with the next best overall record going to North leader Birmingham at 62-52. The Lookouts have the third-best league mark at 56-52, with the discrepancy in fewer games compared to Birmingham largely due to the cancellation of four contests late last month against the visiting Tennessee Smokies due to their COVID-19 related issues.
So the Lookouts, despite having the same number of losses as the Barons, are three games back overall and need to make up that deficit in these final six contests. Birmingham is closing out its regular season in Montgomery against the Biscuits, who are 58-55.
"In the event of a tie, it's head-to-head record," Mozingo said, "and if they remain tied after head-to-head record, it goes to best overall winning percentage in the last 20 games."
Birmingham and Chattanooga split 24 meetings this season, and the Lookouts are the hotter team with a 10-4 mark in their past 14 games heading into these final six.
Mozingo said this final homestand contains fireworks both Friday and Saturday and that two used cars will be given away Saturday.
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