Originally Posted by TheVulture
The magic number would have to be greater than twice the number of games remaining for a team to be eliminated, since it is the sum of the teams wins and its opponents losses required to clinch the division. If you are ten games back with ten games remaining, you'd have win ten and they'd have to lose 10, hence a magic number of 20. If it were 21, you would have been eliminated.
The magic number being discussed is a theoretical number needed by 2nd (or 3rd or whatever) places teams to clinch the division.
You're talking about the elimination number, which MLB lists in their standings. Not saying you're incorrect at all, just that I think it's easier to use the term elimination number to refer to what you're talking about, as to not get it confused with the magic number.