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What does history say about the best point in the season to secure a spot in the playoffs?

While looking toward the future with our comprehensive slate of current content, we'd also like to recognize our rich past by drawing upon our extensive (and mostly free) online archive of work dating back to 1997. In an effort to highlight the best of what's gone before, we'll be bringing you a weekly blast from BP's past, introducing or re-introducing you to some of the most informative and entertaining authors who have passed through our virtual halls. If you have fond recollections of a BP piece that you'd like to nominate for re-exposure to a wider audience, send us your suggestion.

Is it better for a team's playoff hopes to seal a playoff spot early in September, or to have a race come down to the wire? Mike surveyed baseball history in search of an answer in the piece reprinted below, which was originally published on October 1, 2006.

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