The Nationals entered tonight seven games out of the National League’s second wild-card spot with 19 games to play, which translates into a 1.2 percent at the postseason, according to Baseball Prospectus’s odds calculator. And so season-ticket holders may have been surprised to receive an e-mail this afternoon from the Nationals announcing playoff tickets had gone on sale.

It is actually standard procedure for MLB teams with even a shred of playoff hope to send out playoff ticket information at this stage of the season. The Diamondbacks, who are a game behind the Nationals, also sent playoff ticket information to their season ticket holders.

Season-ticket holders have first crack at playoff tickets, but they can buy them now only at the risk of putting down more money for tickets next year. Season-ticket holders who purchase a Nationals playoff ticket package now will be refunded for any postseason games not played. But that refund will applied toward 2014 season tickets, not cash given back to the fan.

That policy is not universal through the league. The Orioles, for example, will give season-ticket holders the option to put any unused playoff ticket money toward 2014 season tickets or to simply get their money back.