AL Wild Card Game: Go Baseball

October 2, 2013 at 7:29 pm | Posted in Game Threads | Leave a comment

progressivefieldUnlike yesterday’s NLDS wild card between the Pirates and the Reds, I can’t really say I have a strong rooting interest here tonight. The Indians and Rays are both pretty likeable small-market teams, and your choice might come down to how exactly you feel about ex-Dodger first baseman James Loney hitting third in the Tampa Bay lineup and former Dodger prospect Carlos Santana hitting cleanup for the Indians.

Tampa starts Alex Cobb, who came back from a line drive to the head to have a wonderful season, while Cleveland sends out rookie Danny Salazar, who has all of ten major league starts.

Rays
Indians
LF
DeJesus
CF
Bourn
RF
Myers
1B
Swisher
1B
Loney
2B
Kipnis
3B
Longoria
DH
Santana
2B
Zobrist
LF
Brantley
CF
Jennings
RF
Raburn
DH
Young
SS
Cabrera
SS
Escobar
C
Gomes
P
Molina
3B
Chisenhall

There’s not even really a difference here as far as “just rooting for a good story”. The Rays ended their season in Toronto on Sunday, flew to Texas Monday to beat the Rangers in a tiebreaker, are now in Cleveland, and if they win they prize is to be in Boston on Friday to start the ALCS.

Meanwhile, the Indians were basically left for dead earlier in September before winning 10 games in a row to take the wild card, actually finishing just a single game behind Detroit for the AL Central. Of course, those ten wins came against the Astros, White Sox, and Twins, who had absolutely nothing to play for and little chance to put up any defense even if they did.

An appropriate counter-argument is “but the Indians have a racist mascot,” which they do, but the Rays employ Josh Lueke and Delmon Young, so, you can come up with negative things about both sides.

In conclusion, I suppose: go baseball.

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