Over 11 years ago, I wrote about Magic Numbers. Trust me, there's nothing supernatural about this magic. Here's an excerpt of what I wrote back then.
My fondest memories are of the Magic Number. The Magic Number is simply the number of games that the team leading a division needs to win to ensure winning the division. If you're leading the division with ten games remaining and your Magic Number is three, you only need to win three of those ten games to ensure winning the division. Each time you win, your Magic Number goes down by one. Each time your nearest divisional competitor loses, your Magic Number also goes down by one. When your Magic Number hits zero, you've clinched the division.
During the home stretch of late August and September, I would anxiously attack our delivery of the Toronto Star and head straight for the Sports section. If the Blue Jays were leading the American League East division, and we usually were during the 1980s, there would always be a Magic Number feature. Counting that number down to zero and another Blue Jays pennant is something I fondly recall, especially that first one in 1985.
When I started this blog in 2002, I always intended to track our Magic Number. Of course, with the Jays never leading their division in September, that never made sense... until now. I'm now tracking our Magic Number prominently at the top of the home page.
It's currently at 17, having dropped six over the past three days. Go Jays, Go!