In case you missed the Yankees’ second gold bottles celebration last night, the MLB’s most ridiculous team did, in fact, win the Wildcard game against the underdog Minnesota Twins. Like all of Red Sox Nation and anyone with a soul, I was rooting for the Twins to shut New York up for an early offseason, but c’est la vie.
The good news is that they now have to face the inimitable Cleveland WINdians. The Ohio team had a 22-games winning streak last month and have 102 wins. Their pitchers have the lowest ERA (3.30), allowed the least home runs in the entire MLB, and also lead the entire league in K’s, with 1,614. They are heavily favored to make it to the World Series, which makes it all so much sweeter knowing we get to watch them destroy the Yankees. Trevor Bauer (17-9, 4.19 ERA) and Cy Young-favorite Corey Kluber (18-4, 2.25 ERA) will take the mound for Games 1 & 2, and I honestly don’t think Yankees arms Sonny Gray (10-12, 3.55 ERA) and Masahiro Tanaka (13-12, 4.74 ERA) can match them.
The Indians and Yankees actually faced off in the ALDS ten years ago, too. Joba Chamberlain gave up the tying run, and the Indians advanced to the ALCS after winning it in the 11th inning. Now with Francona at the helm, the Tribe might finally pull off a World Series W for the first time since 1948, now the longest drought in the Majors.
I don’t know if the Red Sox will be able to get past the Houston Astros, but I can take comfort in the fact that the Indians will take down the Yankees. A Red Sox loss is always less painful when the Yankees go down with the ship, too. And if by some hellish miracle, the Sox and Yankees both emerge victorious and head to the ALCS, I’m always game for another 2004.
The ALDS begins tomorrow night, Thursday, Oct 5.