Nationals Arm Race

"… the reason you win or lose is darn near always the same – pitching.” — Earl Weaver

The One-game playoff before the One-game playoff

leave a comment

Tampa or Texas tonight, who you got?  Gut check says Tampa.  Reasons:

Pro Tampa:

  • David Price is going to give his team a better chance of winning than Martin Perez.  Overall pedigree, last couple of starts, big-game experience all favor Price over the rookie Perez.  Texas blew their ace (Darvish) last night.
  • Texas’s schedule is just a ton easier than Tampa’s, meaning Tampa is just a better team. Texas had ten more intra-division wins than Tampa did thanks to a 17-2 season series over the hapless Houston Astros.  Frankly. Tampa is probably at least 5-6 games better than Texas had they played even schedules.

Points of note that favor neither side:

  • Both teams hit lefties well (they’re ranked 3rd and 5th in the majors in BA vs lefties), so this isn’t likely to be a 1-0 nailbiter.

Pro Texas:

  • Texas has the travel advantage; they’ve been at home for more than a week.  Tampa meanwhile hasn’t seen home in a week, having played in NY and Toronto their last two series, and now they have to travel to Dallas for the do-or-die.
  • Texas took the season series 4-3, wining 2 of 3 at home very early in the season.
  • As David Schoenfield points out, Price is not good historically versus the Rangers.

We’ll see though.  These coin-flip games are tough to predict.

I tell you, the Tampa guys may be pretty exhausted by the end of this week if everything plays out for them.  If they win all the way through to the divisional series, they will have flown to New York, played 3, then flown to Toronto to play 3, flown to Texas to play 1, then flown to Cleveland to play 1, then flown to Boston to start the Divisional series on October 4th.  That’s a lot of miles in a week and a half.

Whoever wins has to be disadvantaged at Cleveland.

Full MLB playoff schedule at

Written by Todd Boss

September 30th, 2013 at 10:45 am

Leave a Reply