MLB Championships: Rangers Cruze!
On Saturday, October 15th, the Rangers did what no team had done in a decade (NY Yankees) — they repeated as American League champions. They rode the record-breaking bats of Nelson Cruz and Michael Young to a resounding 15-5 thrashing of the Detroit Tigers. The 4 games to 2 series victory never really seemed in doubt. Texas Rangers baseball is setting new standards for the MLB Championships.
Derek Holland somewhat redeemed himself from his ineffective game 2 start. He’s pitched better in the past, but the young left-hander showed why he is the Rangers’ chief mound hope for the future. Manager Ron Washington relieved Holland early, and the amazing Rangers’ bullpen continued their “shut-down” of the Tiger bats. The Tigers’ less-than-stellar defense showed up, too, to aid in the Cowtown Crew’s runaway win. And, Josh Hamilton flashed some serious leather on a “web gem” caliber catch of a sizzling line drive later in the contest.
Max Scherzer started for Detroit, but the wheels fell off in the third inning with a 9-run onslaught by the Rangers. The game was essentially over at that point. The Rangers’ team leader, Michael Young, became the first player in LCS history to collect 2 extra-base hits in the same inning. The remarkable Nelson Cruz was named ALCS MVP with 6 HRs and 13 RBIs–both post-season series’ records!
The World Series 2011 starts Wednesday, October 19th at the home park of the National League champion. If you’ll remember, this turn of events is based on which league wins MLB’s All-Star game each year, a practice implemented in 2003. The American League won every All-Star Game since this change until 2010. Don’t ask me why–don’t know anyone who really knows.
On Sunday, October 16th, the NLCS returns to Miller Park in Milwaukee. Game 6 will feature the St. Louis Cardinals’ Edwin Jackson matching up with the Brewers’ Shaun Marcum. Jackson has pitched OK, but Marcum has recently lost his command. He’ll need to find it in order to give the Brew Crew a chance.
Currently, the Cardinals hold a 3 games to 2 edge and will be trying to clinch the NL pennant with a victory today. Both teams’ offenses are potentially explosive. They’ll need to be, as both teams’ defenses need help.
Give a slight nod to the Brewers in game 6–a little home cookin’ should do wonders for the Milwaukee club.
Playoff baseball–America’s gift to the sporting world!