September 29, 2008

It all comes down to this

by Dan Bilicki In: Baseball

How exciting/horrifying is this scenario: The White Sox season comes down to not one, but two must-win games. First, they’ll take on Detroit today in a rain-out makeup game and if they win, they’ll be tied for the AL Central lead with the Twins, necessitating a playoff tomorrow. Did Gavin Floyd, today’s starter, even sleep last night with the weight of an entire season on his right shoulder? Then, how intense will rivalry matchup between the Twins and Sox be for the potential tiebreaker on Wednesday? The only people who should be feeling relieved by all of this are the Tampa Bay Rays and their fan base. Surely, facing a team that had to scratch their way into the post-season will be better than facing a rested squad. Heck, who knows how draining — physically and emotionally — this wild finish will be for the AL Central champion.
The Mets bullpen blew it again and are you surprised at all? I’m not. They’ve been absolutely terrible since Billy Wagner was injured and not nearly good enough to even justify being in the playoffs. Really, what would have been more heartbreaking: Not making the playoffs or having the bullpen blow three straight playoff games to the Cubs? Either way, it’ll be pretty hard to imagine the Mets not throwing a large amount of money at soon-to-be-free-agent closer Francisco Rodriguez this winter. With Wagner out next season after Tommy John surgery, it makes total sense instead of turning over ninth inning duties to Luis Ayala.
Now that the match ups — excluding the AL Central — are set, we can also get some analysis of the subjects. A few things that have caught my eye: Boston and the Angels meeting in a five-game, first round series seems like a waste. They’re two of the best teams in baseball and only getting a shortened series out of the two is disappointing … The two teams that benefited from the Mets collapse are facing each other. This series will likely come down to who is the bigger slugger: Ryan Howard or Prince Fielder (pun intended). Also, do Milwaukee’s arms have enough left? … I will not be surprised if Manny Ramirez hits .800 with 10 home runs in a five-game series against the Cubs and the Dodgers still lose. Other than Manny, there’s not a lot good about L.A. … Right now, I’d pick the Red Sox and Cubs to meet in the World Series, but I’ll make an official pick later this week.

1 Comment

  1. How great is this! An entire season coming down to nine innings of baseball !

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