Playoffs? Plaaaayoffs? Yeah. Playoffs.
- The Yankees are in a spot of trouble. After losing on Saturday to the Tigers - and losing Derek Jeter to a broken ankle - the Yankees dropped Game Two of the ALCS 3-0 when their bats couldn't muster much against Anibal Sanchez. Now the series shifts to Detroit for Game Three tomorrow night at 7pm CT.
- As for Jeter, that broken ankle is likely to need surgery, and will have him out three months. That means he should be theoretically fine for Spring Training, but you've got to wonder about the lasting impact on an older body, particularly one that is expected to play shortstop. Is this the event that gives the Yankees an excuse to finally move him to another position?
- Lefty reliever Phil Coke - who struggled intermittently this year - closed out the win for the Tigers, not nominal closer Jose Valverde, who has had a brutally bad postseason. Manager Jim Leyland said not to read too much into the move, but it's fair to wonder if he'll stick with a hotter hand.
- The Cardinals won the first game of the NLCS over the Giants 6-4, thanks to a blasting of Madison Bumgarner. After the fourth inning, the Cardinals didn't manage a hit. But, by then, it didn't matter. The two teams square off again tonight at 7pm CT on Fox.
- Did you know that Carlos Beltran currently has the lowest postseason AB/HR ratio in baseball history at 7.71? He also sports the top postseason slugging percentage in baseball history for guys with at least 75 at bats (.824).
- Spurred by a terrible missed call last night, Yankees manager Joe Girardi used his post-game speech to stump for increased instant replay."It's frustrating," he said. "I don't have a problem with [umpire] Jeff [Nelson]'s effort, I don't, because he hustled to get to the play. But in this day and age when we have instant replay available to us, it's got to change. These guys are under tremendous amounts of pressure. It is a tough call for him, because the tag is underneath and it's hard for him to see. And it takes more time to argue and get upset than you get the call right. Too much is at stake."
- Speaking of which, Rob Neyer wonders if it's really all that easy to manage the Yankees. The primary focus is how to handle the Alex Rodriguez situation, and what happens next year if ARod struggles as much as he has in the last couple months.
- Beyond the Boxscore looks at what happens to guys after unexpected power surges (i.e., surprise increases in ISO (or IsoP - isolated power)), and when those power surges are likely to happen.