One of the most exciting aspect of the NFL playoffs is the one-game, life or death set up. In baseball, this is largely missing except for Game 5s or Game 7s, and as a result the hotter team generally wins. This has worked in the Red Sox’s favor twice (re 2004, 2007) and can mean that despite the Yankees 103 wins, they could still blow it in October, but still, nothing beats sudden death.
Tonight, the Tigers and Twins will engage in battle at 5 PM. Everything is on the line. 162 games comes down to this. A tie, two equal teams, facing off against one another to determine who has the chance to capture glory and who will be watching October on the TV at home.
I’m rooting for Detroit for no particular reason other than the city of Detroit has nothing going for them. I mean, just watch this video:
The only good thing about Cleveland is they are not Detroit. Not good news for Detroit.
Minnesota has been a good team for a long time. They are right on the cusp of the Wild Card pretty frequently. They won the AL Central in 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2006.They have had some issues come playoff time, but at least they’ve been there.
Detroit, on the other hand, used to be a team on your schedule that was penciled in as an automatic win. They won the Wild Card in 2006 and lost in the World Series. Other than that, they had not been to the playoffs since 1987 and last won the World Series in 1984. Detroit lost 119 games in 2003, and 106 games the year before. That’s two of their five worst seasons back to back. Just last year, Detroit finished last in their division.
I love rooting for underdogs. After all, I have been a Red Sox fan for almost 20 years now, and I’m also a huge Bruins fan. The Bruins are in a bit of Stanley Cup rut right now, if no one has noticed. Detroit is an underdog based on history here, but I think they have a pretty good team. I love Verlander, Washburn, Bonderman, Inge, Guillen, Granderson. These guys are some of the best (but for the most part quietly best) players of the decade.
Don’t get me wrong. The Twins have a great team, and if they made the playoffs I wouldn’t root against them unless they play the Sox in the ALCS, but they’ve had so many chances this decade. Let’s embrace parity. Let’s give someone else a chance.