I like every team in this year’s playoffs except for the St. Louis Cardinals, I have never liked the Cardinals, just like I’ve never liked the Orioles, or the Phillies, or the Mets, Astros, Nationals, except when they were the Montreal Expos, and Padres. No real reasons for not liking them, I’ve just never been a fan of any of these teams.
The Boston Red Sox and Detroit Tigers are obvious choices for me. Detroit is my hometown team and Boston is the hometown team. Besides, the Red Sox did the old last to first trick this year, tore up the leagues with the best record in baseball, the best run differential and scored the most runs.
The Tigers are second in runs scored and have been in the playoffs three years in a row for the first time since 1907-08-09 when they were led by a baseball maniac called Ty Cobb. That’s not too shabby.
The rest of the teams in the playoffs all have some sort of appeal to me in one way or another. The Pittsburgh Pirates are a favorite of mine and not because this is the first year in 21 years that they’ve had a winning record or are going to the playoffs, it’s because of an trip years ago involving the Montreal Expos and an intense, long drive from Michigan to Pittsburgh to catch a weekend series.
Atlanta I like because they’ve been one of the premier franchises for such a long time and a delight to watch. And they’ve been able to sustain their winning ways since the great Bobby Cox retired as manager.
I like the Oakland A’s mostly because they’re the Oakland A’s. They play in probably one of the crappiest venues in all of baseball, never have any money yet seem to pull out winning seasons year after year. And they used to have those hideous uniforms many years ago.
The Cleveland Indians I like because, well honestly, they’re the Cleveland Indians and live in that mistake on the lake town, and because Tito Francona is their manager. I enjoyed him when he managed the Boston Red Sox to their first World Series win in 86 years back in 2004, and then again in 2007. I thought it ridiculous of the Red Sox to sack him after the chicken and beer debacle and final month breakdown back in 2011, but when he hooked on with the Indians this year I cheered him on and he hasn’t let me down.
I’m sort of on the fence about the LA Dodgers though. Some years I like them like when Kirk Gibson (former Tiger) hit that towering home run in the 1988 World Series and spurred them on to victory. This year I can take them or leave them. They made that huge trade with the Red Sox last summer that apparently has paid off big time for them even though Josh Beckett (of beer and chicken Red Sox fame) hasn’t been much of a contributor.
Cincinnati I like for the sole reason that Dusty Baker is their manager. I like that he always has a toothpick in his mouth. And of course they have one of the best players in all of baseball, Joey Votto.
So all in all I have many favorites in this year’s playoffs, making sure that every game I watch will be a delight. And that’s what baseball’s all about any way. Spend a couple hours watching your favorite team, or teams, tear it up on the field. This year there will never a dull moment.