The beauty of baseball is that something is always happening. Whether mired in the dregs of a lost season or finishing up a methodic march to a division title, every team has some kind of compelling plot point going on.
So here, in no particular order, are 30 reasons to watch MLB's 30 teams in these final weeks of the regular season.
Astros: Jose Altuve. The American League West race is pretty much over, but the Altuve road hit parade is just getting started. His .418 road batting average would stand as the third best of all-time, trailing only Harry Heilmann's .456 mark for the 1925 Tigers and Rogers Hornsby's .419 for the '21 Cardinals.
Reds: Joey Votto's National League MVP Award bid. Over his past 162 games, he has a .334/.450/.614 slash line (only Mike Trout has a higher OPS) with 41 homers and 117 RBIs. Dude's unreal.
Giants: Pablo Sandoval. Can he salvage anything out of another lost season?
Red Sox: The Rafael Devers Show. He got the intentional walk treatment just 16 games into his Major League career, and for good reason. With a .348/.411/.667 slash line, he's shored up what was a Panda-sized hole at third base and helped the Red Sox take control of the AL East.
Dodgers: The search for 117. The all-time wins record comes with nary a single October guarantee, but it would still be pretty sweet.
Yankees: The home runs he served up to Devers on Sunday night and to the Mets' Amed Rosario on Tuesday night added to the questions about Chapman's confidence. His ERA is 3.89, his WHIP is at 1.33, his strikeout rate has declined and his 100-mph fastballs seems to require more effort, as opposed to the free and easy approach of old and his hamstring is iffy. The Yankees have a deep bullpen, but Chapman remains the closer and possibly the club's biggest question mark in the home stretch of a fight to win the AL East or at least maintain the top Wild Card spot.
D-backs: Robbie Ray's looming return. His return from that scary line drive to the head can't fix everything, but it can help shore up a rotation spot in which Anthony Banda has struggled. And that would loom large in the attempt to nail down an October spot.
Blue Jays: The end of the Jose Bautista era? He's been the franchise figurehead for so long, but the decline over the past two seasons has been pretty steep. Root for Joey Bats to finish with a flourish, Jays fans. You've been good to him, he's been good to you, and it would be nice to see him go out on a high note.
Mets: The early days of Amed Rosario and Dominic Smith. Rosario profiles as an impact shortstop on both sides of the ball and Smith as a pure-hitting first baseman, and the benefit of a lost season is the opportunity it provides these two potential cornerstones.
Indians: The rotation. It has been on fire of late, with Danny Salazar's return from DL/Minors exile (1.39 ERA, .446 opponents' OPS in 32 1/3 innings over five starts) bringing the Corey Kluber-led group to full strength. Can they help the Tribe make another deep October run?
Marlins: Giancarlo Stanton's run at Roger Maris. Spare me the "real home run record" nonsense. But 61 is still a pretty special number in baseball lore. And heck, we'll settle for the big 6-0, which nobody's reached since Sammy Sosa (64) and Barry Bonds (73) in 2001.
Tigers: Every Justin Verlander start. He has been the greatest homegrown pitcher this charter AL franchise has ever produced, and so his every trip to the mound wearing that old English "D" is something to be celebrated.
Angels: Trout's hunt for a red October. He missed a month and a half with a thumb injury, but in terms of batting average, slugging percentage, OPS, OPS+ and wRC+, Trout is having the best season of his career, which is saying something. And the Angels just might be good enough to sneak into Trout's second postseason.
Cubs: Joe Maddon. He's been faced with quite a test this year, with an underachieving roster currently missing its only overachiever in Willson Contreras. We'll see what clubhouse tricks and what in-game moves Maddon has up his sleeve in some key division tilts (including seven with the Cardinals in their last 16) in the home stretch.
Cardinals: Mike Matheny. He's faced a tremendous amount of scrutiny for, well, pretty much everything. But if the Cards can somehow come away with the NL Central title, Matheny will (temporarily) quiet a lot of critics.
Mariners: Felix Hernandez's return. He should be back around Sept. 1. Can Hernandez help lift the M's to the next level: his first playoff appearance and the franchise's first since 2001?
A's: Matt Chapman's burgeoning power. He's a prime piece of the A's youth movement, and he's also representative of the all-or-nothing, fly-ball-heavy hitting approach that became Oakland's hallmark several years back and is now the norm in the Majors.
White Sox: Reynaldo Lopez. Yoan Moncada's continued development also qualifies here, but it's hard not to be wrapped up, but the 23-year-old Lopez's eye-popping fastball and wipeout curve looked pretty special in his debut against the Royals last week.
Nationals: Stephen Strasburg's return. We'll all feel a lot better about the Nats' chances of ascending in October if Strasburg, who has been out since July 24 with a right elbow impingement, is pain-free and in fine form down the stretch. He's expected back in Washington's rotation this weekend.
Twins: Byron Buxton's maturation. In the midst of the AL Wild Card race, Buxton has begun to look more like the player we dreamed him to be. His defensive value has always been off the charts, but his bat has been slow to arrive. Going back to July 4, however, Buxton has been getting on base at a .417 clip, creating traffic and swiping a handful of bags. Pair the glove with even a league average bat, and you have something special.
Braves: Ozzie Albies and Dansby Swanson, BFFs. They've only been in the big leagues at the same time for about a week, but if all goes to plan, they'll be paired together in the middle of the diamond for Atlanta for years to come.
Padres: Dinelson Lamet. Quietly, this 25-year-old is emerging as a potential long-term pitching piece for an organization that desperately needs it. He's made 14 starts in the bigs, and in four of them, he allowed five earned runs or more in five innings or less. But recently the Padres implored Lamet to start trusting his slider more frequently, and in his past five starts, he has a 2.37 ERA and .493 opponents' OPS.
Phillies: Rhys Hoskins, baby. No idea if he can stick in left field, but Hoskins rose out of the obscurity of his fifth-round selection in the 2014 Draft by consistently posting over-.900 OPS marks in the Minors, so his bat is interesting. Three of his first four big league hits since his promotion last week were homers.
Rays: The return of Kevin Kiermaier to help boost their Wild Card hopes. He'll likely be back this weekend, and though Kiermaier is known far more for his glove than his bat, Mallex Smith's 36 wRC+ in the second half speaks to the need to upgrade the center-field production.
Brewers: Neil Walker. He began his Brewers career with a .429 average and a .929 OPS. Well, OK, that was only in his first two games, but still -- this is a guy who can help the offense get the traction it was lacking in the second half and legitimize the effort to earn an October berth that was unexpected at the start of the season.
Rangers: Joey Gallo's odd output. He's got 34 homers. He's got 20 singles. Barring a sudden spate of singles, Gallo is going to become just the third person in history to qualify for the batting title while hitting more homers than singles (Barry Bonds in 2001 and Mark McGwire in 1998 and '99).
Rockies: Chad Bettis. Not every start will be as stirring as what we saw in Bettis' return from testicular cancer treatment Monday, but this guy means a lot to the Rox's rotation even outside of that feel-good affair. He's the most veteran arm of a young staff, and obviously it's a fresh arm. That's a huge help in the final playoff push.
Orioles: Manny Machado. Will he still be on the O's by Opening Day 2018? Who knows. But Machado's return to prominence here in the second half (.336/.371/.550) has been a big shot of life to a team that needed it for the Wild Card pursuit.
Pirates: Andrew McCutchen. The Pirates won't move McCutchen this offseason unless they get overwhelmed, and they won't get such an offer unless there's pretty strong belief on behalf of the buyer that his performance can again be overwhelming.
Royals: Mike Moustakas' soon-to-be Royals record. The Royals clearly have bigger goals in mind, but Moose is about to become the Chosen One who finally says "Bye Bye" to Steve Balboni's 32-year-old mark of 36 home runs, and he'll probably topple the Kansas City A's record of 38 set by Bob Cerv in 1958, too. We've been talking about Kansas City's graduating core all year, and given the organizational history, Moustakas could have his name in the franchise record books for many years to come.
Anthony Castrovince is a Sports on Earth contributor, MLB.com columnist and MLB Network contributor. Follow him on Twitter @Castrovince.