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Eric Wedge's Seattle Mariners have been out of the postseason discussion for a while now.

That doesn't mean there's nothing left to play for.

Last week, Seattle was involved in a four-game series in Detroit against the AL Central-leading Tigers, and now the Mariners are taking on Kansas City, which has been in the thick of the race for a wild card. So these are big games and Wedge, Seattle's manager, wants to see how his players respond.

The concept of the late-season spoiler exists in many sports, but it's perhaps most celebrated in baseball. Even the worst teams win about 40 percent of their games, so there are no gimmes for teams chasing postseason spots.