By Jason Wojciechowski on October 8, 2006 at 12:32 AM
Congratulations to the Tigers. Whodathunk it'd be A's-Tigers in the ALCS?
The A's were a popular pick to win the West, but with their injuries and traditional first-half problems, it was certainly doubtful whether they'd live up to those expectations. Then, of course, the A's got the Twins in the Division Series, a team chock full of award candidates (Johan Santana, Francisco Liriano, Joe Mauer, Justin Morneau). And then finally, the spectre of playoff failures past still haunted the team, even if there were only two players left over from that first jaunt into the postseason, in 2000.
And the Tigers! The Prospectus folks almost uniformly picked them to finish either third or fourth. Dayn Perry had them at second, but not winning the Wild Card. Combine low expectations with the fact that the team wasn't all that impressive in the second half (40-41), particularly as compared with its stellar first half (55-26), and Yankees in three or four games seemed like a reasonable outcome.
But instead, here we go, with Barry Zito against Nate Robertson (according to Fox) on Tuesday.
After seeing some of those Tiger pitchers really dominate a good Yankee offense, the LCS certainly has me worried, but I think the A's have a good chance to get to the World Series. I'm taking A's in six.