ST PETERSBURG, FL - SEPTEMBER 28: Infielder Evan Longoria #3 of the Tampa Bay Rays rounds the bases after his bottom of the twelveth inning walk off home run against the New York Yankees during the game at Tropicana Field on September 28, 2011 in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by J. Meric/Getty Images)
1 Total Update since September 30, 2011
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The MLB playoffs begin on Friday evening with the Rays and Rangers playing at 5:07 PM, and the Tigers and Yankees also begin their series on Friday, with Game 1 starting at 8:37 PM.
So let’s say you’re a Pirates fan, and your team has been out of contention since mid-August or so. Who do you root for? Pat Lackey at the Pirates blog WHYGAVS has has some suggestions with his Pirate’s fan’s guide to the 2011 postseason.
His conclusion seems to be that the Rangers, Tigers, Rays, Diamondbacks and Brewers would all be acceptable teams to root for, and I endorse his recommendations. You can throw out the Yankees, Phillies and Cardinals right away – the Yankees because they’re a blight on professional sports, the Phillies because they’re from Philadelphia, and Cardinals because of Tony La Russa.
The Rays and Brewers would be my ideal matchup, in that, as a Pirates fan, I want small-market teams to succeed. The Brewers are obnoxious because of Ryan Braun and because they always destroy the Pirates, but they’re mostly a well-constructed team in a market not dissimilar to Pittsburgh, and with Prince Fielder departing this offseason, they probably won’t get another chance like the one they have now. And from a team-building perspective, the Rays are just awesome, built almost entirely on brains and young talent. That’s my kind of team.
SB Nation has a blog for every team.