ALCS and NLCS recaps, thoughts
Wow, what a crazy game, huh? We learned (or re-learned, at least) two things about the bullpen in those 13 innings:
1. All A-Rod needs to do to be clutch in the postseason is admit he used steroids. That will put him in the "better place" he keeps talking about. I wonder if the knowledge that he had been cheating did weigh on his mind at all during the last few postseasons. Frankly, I'm surprised nobody from the media has asked him that.
In any case, whatever had been clouding his mind seems to be a thing of the past. Three game-tying home runs in the seventh inning or later in five postseason games, are you kidding? His offensive output has overshadowed the fact that, by and large, the rest of the Yankees just are not hitting at all.
2. The Yankees bullpen is absolutely, positively nails when it matters. 18 1/3 innings -- three runs allowed. That is mighty nice. The best part is: they've been getting contributions from everybody. Phil Hughes, Joba Chamberlain, Phil Coke, David Robertson, Alfredo Aceves -- even Damaso Marte came up with a big strikeout in Game 2. It's not even worth mentioning how good Mariano Rivera has been, that's just a given.
Now, the NLCS:
Two words: Total domination.
I'm already on record in and around The Trentonian office as saying the Dodgers will not win a game the rest of this series. Torre and Co. have to be totally demoralized by the whoopin' Charlie's boys laid on them for three hours and change last night. Cliff Lee absolutely dismantled the Dodgers, almost with surgical precision for eight innings. For goodness sakes, they even allowed Ryan Howard to leg out a triple. Sure, he's lost some weight, but he's still a big, big boy.
The way it looks from here, it's going to be a really sweet October in and around this area. 1950 World Series rematch, here we come.