Today’s Meta (because what good is a day without Meta?). It is indeed Big Friday with 4 games to play. The Junior League will be playing in the afternoon. They have a travel day tomorrow and want to get an early start. TMC and I have an early afternoon meeting so there will be NO liveblogging of those games.
The Senior League plays tonight, Cubs @ Cardinals at 6:30, Mets @ Dodgers at 9:30. If you think I’m going to miss either of those, think again. In fact I have dug out and dusted off my official Blue and Orange Metropolitans Cap (wool of course) because it’s been a looong time since I’ve had anything to celebrate in the Playoffs.
What this means for you, my readers, is that coverage of The Late Show is going to depend on when the game ends and, in another genius move by the same folks that instituted the abomination that is the Designated Hitter, MLB has relaxed the game pace rules. Honestly I expect it will last to 1 am and that’s without extra Innings. I will post because I want to set up next week’s guest lists for you.
Now onto today’s starting game.
Last night’s game
Top of the 3rd the leadoff Batter was HBP. Runner advanced on a sacrifice and scored on a Single. Rangers 1 – 0. Runner advanced on a sacrifice and scored on a Single. Rangers 2 – 0.
Bottom of the 4th a leadoff Single and a Walk. Fielder’s choice, runners at the Corners. RBI Single, 2 On 1 Out. Rangers 2 – 1. That was it.
Top of the 5th leadoff Batter HBP. 2 RBI HR. Rangers 4 – 1.
Bottom of the 5th leadoff Double. Sacrifice, runner advanced. RBI Double. Rangers 4 – 2.
Bottom of the 6th leadoff Solo Shot. Rangers 4 – 3.
Top of the 7th Solo Shot. Rangers 5 – 3 Final.
Rangers lead Series 1 – 0.
Analysis and Setup
I certainly expected the Blue Jays (93 – 90) to start much better than they did. Basically Price did not pitch as well as his record indicated he should and what I didn’t know was that he has a record of choking in the Playoffs. The Rangers (89 – 74) also had better production from the bottom of the order (2 HR) than expected.
Both teams suffered potentially lineup changing injuries. The Rangers lost Adrian Beltre to back spasms and the Blue Jays lost both Josh Donaldson (potential concussion) and Jose Bautista (hamstring spasms). All will be evaluated this morning to see if the can play. While Beltran is a good player the losses to the Blue Jays are possibly more serious since they are the number 2 & 3 hitters in the order.
The Blue Jays will be starting Marcus Stroman (R, 4 – 0, 1.67 ERA). Stroman was benched after his first game of the Season with a torn ACL in his left knee and was expected to be lost for the year. Cole Hamels (l, 13 – 8, 3.65 ERA) will be on the mound for the Rangers. This would be no contest at all except for the injury.
Game time is 12:30 on MLB (which it turns out I get, but I won’t be around).