The Division Series games didn’t really turn out the way a lot of people expected. The Angels and Tigers both got swept. The Nationals and Dodgers are out after winning just one game.
For the most part, that was what I wanted to see. I was rooting for the Royals over the Angels, the Orioles over the Tigers and the Giants over the Nationals. Unfortunately, I wanted to see the Dodgers win it all so ex-Met Justin Turner could get a ring and they couldn’t make it past the Cardinals.
So, it’s time to pick new teams to support. The ALCS opens tonight with “Big Game James” Shields on the mound for Kansas City against Chris Tillman and the Orioles. Shields may have baseball’s dumbest nickname, but the Royals are baseball’s Cinderella-story team this year and I can’t find a good reason to start rooting against them now. (I know I will miss tonight’s game – let’s see how much of the series I actually manage to watch.)
While the American League match up features two teams I don’t have strong feelings about, the National League is a different story. I don’t see any way a Mets fan could root for the Cardinals after 2006, 1987, 1985 and all of the history between the two teams. But the Giants present their own problems – I still haven’t forgotten Matt Cain‘s beaning of David Wright in 2009. And this year’s team went 6-1 against the Mets. Still, the Giants have some New York history and are probably the lesser annoyance, so go San Francisco… I guess.
When it comes to the World Series, I know I will be rooting for whichever American League squad makes it through the ALCS.
Of the remaining playoff teams, who are you rooting for?
More than a month after receiving a 50-game suspension for a positive PED test, Cabrera still has the highest batting average in the National League. His .346 average is eight points better than Andrew McCutchen‘s .338 and 11 points higher than Buster Posey‘s .335.
Cabrera’s request opened the door for baseball to change the rules governing the qualifications for winning a batting title, but it also raises other questions that might cause more awkwardness than the possibility of a cheater receiving an individual award.
On the baseball front, the Mets pitching rotation still looks pretty weak — but that’s not stopping everyone from WFAN callers to Jerry Manuel from campaigning for a Manny signing.
Meanwhile, the Yankees managed to deal with their own rotation problems by finally re-signing Andy Pettitte. I hate getting sucked into the whole Mets vs. Yankees thing, but I can’t help feeling like the Yankees won this offseason.
I’m not sure how much I care about any of this, but I guess it makes for late-January entertainment.