Home Teams Win First Postseason Games
All the home teams won in the first day of postseason baseball. The Phillies, Yankees and Dodgers only need to win two more games out their next four games to advance to the league championship series.
Phillies 5 Rockies 1
The Phillies and Rockies were tied after four and-a-half innings but the Phillies scored twice in the bottom of the fifth and three times in the sixth and never looked back. The Rockies didn’t score their lone run till the ninth inning.
The Rockies needed a good start from Ubaldo Jiminez but it didn’t happen and now with Jorge De La Rosa out for the series and Jason Marquis not likely to be starting it doesn’t look good for the Rockies.
The 4-5-6 hitters were 6-11 with four runs batted in for the Phillies. With Cliff Lee on the mound there was no need to bring in Brad Lidge. After leading the major with fewest blown saves in 2008 he led the majors in most blown saves. The deeper the Phillies go into the postseason the more they will need Lidge to return to his form of last season.
Lidge has given up no runs and one hit over his last three relief appearances after giving up runs in his prior five appearances. However one of those games was a blowout win by the Phillies and a blowout loss to the Astros in a mopup role.
He did pitch a scoreless inning in a loss to the Marlins in his last appearance of the season so he hasn’t been tested for awhile.
Yankees 7 Twins 2
The Twins scored the first two runs of the game in the top of the third but never scored again as the Yankees countered with two more of their own in the bottom of the frame. Derek Jeter’s two-run homer off of Brian Duensing set the tone for the game.
The Yankees scored again in the fourth and the fifth innings to extend their lead to 6-2 and put the game out of reach. Duensing left the game in the fifth inning after having given up five runs and seven hits.
C.C. Sabathia showed why he is being paid the big money and showed no effects of pitching in postseason baseball. Only one of the two runs he allowed were earned.
Hideki Matsui who hit 13 homers and drove in 43 runs over the last two months of the season hit a two run homer in the fifth inning.
It was almost expected that the Twins would lose considering they didn’t arrive in New York till 4AM on Wednesday morning after their 12 inning win on Tuesday night over the Tigers.
Still the team losing the first game in the ALDS has a 14-14 record while in the NL the first game losing teams are 25-3.
Dodgers 5 Cardinals 3
The Dodgers were the third and last team to record a home victory with their 5-3 win over the Cardinals. The Cardinals were the first team to score in the game taking a 1-0 lead in the first inning but the Dodgers came back with two of their own to take a 2-1 lead after one inning.
It was not a typical Chris Carpenter game as he left the game after five innings giving up four runs and nine hits and walking four. The Dodgers took Albert Pujols out of the game walking him intentionally twice.
Jeff Weaver took the win in relief of Randy Wolf who left the game in the fourth inning. Matt Kemp’s first inning homer was the only one hit in the game by either team.
Today’s Division Series Games
Colorado at Philadelphia
Gametime: 2:37 ET on TBS
Starters: Cole Hamels who has given up 13 runs in his last 16 innings will get the start for the Phillies while Aaron Cook will be making only his third start since August 21 for the Rockies. Cook has allowed only one run in his last 13 innings so could give the Phillies problems today.
St. Louis at Los Angeles
Gametime: 6:07 ET on TBS
Starting Pitchers: The Cardinals will send their 19 game winner Adam Wainwright to face Clayton Kershaw in Game 2 of their series. Wainwright saw his chance for a 20 win season go down the drain in his last start when the Cardinals bullpen imploded leaving him with 19 wins.
Kershaw pitched very well in his last start allowing no runs, three hits and struck out 10 in a no-decision game against the Rockies. Since the end of April Kershaw has not allowed more than four runs in a start and allowed four runs only twice and allowed three or less runs in all the other starts.
Boston at Los Angeles
Gametime: 9:37 ET on TBS
Starting Pitchers: Jon Lester will be on the mound for the Red Sox and is in top form coming into the ALDS with six wins in his last seven decisions. His only loss in his last ten games came at the hands of the Yankees.
Liked The Eight Team Leagues Better
In the old days before expansion the AL or NL champions would play each other for the World Series championship. The eight team leagues didn’t have any playoff system. The first team to win four games in the World Series would be the champion.
Today a team has to win eleven games to win the World Series. They could play as few as few as 11 games or as many as 19 games before the world champion has been determined.
When a team wins their division they are only 25 percent of the way toward being the world champion with three rounds left before the best team in baseball emerges from the field of eight teams.
If the World Series goes to the seventh game this year the last game will be played on November 5. In the old days the World Series would be over about the 10th of October if the series went seven games.
Another problem with so many teams in the postseason is that games on the west coast are not even starting till after 9:30 preventing kids with school the next day from seeing the games live.
It is all about money with the wild card bringing more teams into the mix and teams in the playoffs pocket even more money.
Jason Marquis: Second Half Failure
I don’t know what it is about Jason Marquis that prevents him from pitching well in the second half. He has been left off the postseason rosters of the Cardinals and Cubs after bad second halfs.
With the Rockies having lost 16 game winner Jorge De La Rosa for the NLDS you would think Marquis would be starting today’s game. Instead the 15 game winner pitched in relief yesterday in a losing game.
Marquis has posted a 4-7 record in the second half after a 11-6 record in the first half. When he did win since the end of June it has been against teams like Reds, Nationals (twice), Padres and Pirates showing he pitches better against the worst teams.