central intelligence

The Royals find themselves in the thick of the wild-card chase, and they don’t know what to do with themselves. The players are used to planning offseason vacations by now. Instead, they are eyeing their first postseason berth since 1985. Season-ticket holders are receiving playoff ticket information. Manager Ned Yost woke up at 4:30 a.m. one day this week, figuring out ways to juggle the rotation in case he wants James Shields to start a playoff game.

Good times in Kansas City. For the first time in a long time.

“I’ve never been in this situation: Playing for something in September and really not planning for the offseason yet,” outfielder Alex Gordon said. “It’s awesome.”

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Cleveland entered Saturday 1½ games out of a wild-card spot — the first team in line behind the Rangers and Rays — and Indians fans couldn’t care less.

Cleveland has the third-worst attendance in baseball, ahead of just Tampa Bay and Miami. The Indians’ three-game series with Kansas City last week drew a total of 34,494 — 11,498 per game.

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Jhonny Peralta rejoined the Tigers for workouts Wednesday. The All-Star shortstop is serving a 50-game suspension for his involvement in the Biogenesis scandal that runs out with three games left in the season.

He will not return to short, as the team is pleased with Jose Iglesias. Peralta will work out in the outfield and at third, short and second. “I’m angry with myself,” he said.

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At least one thing is going right for the White Sox. They entered Saturday third in the majors with a .258 batting average with two out and runners in scoring position.