Seriously, there is a lot at stake in the Twins/Rangers series… and not just to see if Rich Harden’s arm would fall off before his no hitter bid was over.
Not sure if you noticed this or not, but as of this writing, the Minnesota Twins would have home field advantage in the Division Series while the Rangers would start Cliff Lee on the road for Game 1 against either Tampa Bay or New York.
Home field advantage might be the only way for the Twins to advance past the Division Series for the first time since 2002 (after losing the Division Series in 2003, 2004, 2006 and 2009.)
They are one ahead in the loss column of Texas and including yesterday’s near no hitter, they have won 3 of 4 in the season series. They have 6 more games head to head and they can go a long way to determining who gets to host the first round.
The Rangers got some heartening news from the Harden start last night. Sure a combined no hitter would be sexy, but Harden’s entire career has been described as “He’d be an ace if he stayed healthy.”
They don’t need him healthy for a season. Just a few months.
Either way, it’s a big series… and for those of you who keep complaining that all the attention is put on the Yankees and Red Sox… START PAYING ATTENTION.
125 games into the season and the Rays and Yankees are dead even.
They are both the best team in baseball, although if they finished tied it looks as if Tampa Bay would win the AL East based on their head to head record.
Now if I told you there would be two teams tied for the best record in baseball… and one of them had lost their biggest slugger to injuries, their veteran World Champion left handed starter was on the DL, their captain was day to day and they seemed to be starting the 15th caller from WFAN 2 out of every 3 starts.
And the other team seemed to have a never ending supplies of phenoms coming out of their farm system and their former #1 pick over all (no not the pitcher who was #1 over all but the outfielder) was finally hitting….
Wouldn’t you think the second team has the better chance to win one more game than the first?
It’s no longer about payroll. It’s about who will do better over 37 games.
Now if the Red Sox start SWEEPING series, they might be in this equation as well… but for now, the two best teams in baseball have 37 games to determine who will start the post season at home.
It REALLY looked like the Rangers were going to have a combined no hitter tonight. But Joe Mauer got a 2 strike single in the ninth off of Neftali Perez.
No shame in letting up a hit to Joe Mauer.
But I had already written the piece in my head and was going to update the “Most Recent No Hitter” tally.
I don’t take the blame myself. I think Joe Mauer’s ability was more relevant than my writing a blog post.
So Kenny Rogers’s perfect game is STILL the most recent Rangers no hitter.
Padres and Mets remain on the clock.
Kenny Rogers’ Perfect Game: The Old School Edition from Luis Alicea on Vimeo.