Oct 17

ALDS Game Five, 2022

Guardians at Yankees, 4:07 PM PDT, TV: TBS

In a winner-take-all game, the pitchers for each team are obscure, at least to me. The Guardians start RHP Aaron Civale (5-6, 4.92 ERA) and the Yankees counter with RHP Jameson Taillon (14-5, 3.91 ERA).

Update: The game has been postponed till Tuesday due to rain, and the Yankees have changed their pitcher from Taillon to LHP Nestor Cortes (12-4, 2.44 ERA), who’ll be pitching on short (three days) rest for only the second time in his career. The first time didn’t go well — in 2019 he gave up four runs on six hits and came out after 2 1/3 innings.

The Guardians have not yet said whether they’ll stick with their announced pitcher Civale or perhaps call on their ace Shane Bieber, who would also be pitching on three days rest.

Today in baseball history:

“Well, I don’t know if we’re on the air or not and I’m not sure I care at this particular moment but we are. Well folks, that’s the greatest open in the history of television, bar none. We’re still here. We are still as we can well on the air, and I guess you are hearing us, even though we have no picture and no return audio. And we will be back, we hope, from San Francisco in just a moment.” – AL MICHAELS, the ABC-TV play-by-play announcer, reacting to the Bay Area earthquake.

As the Giants and A’s get ready to play Game 3 of the 1989 World Series, a massive 6.9-magnitude Loma Prieta earthquake hits the Bay Area, which will be responsible for 63 deaths. Commissioner Fay Vincent quickly postponed the Candlestick Park contest, wisely ordering the ballpark’s evacuation.

Oct 10

ALCS Day One, 2014

Royals at Orioles, 2:00PM HST/5:00PM PT, TV: TBS

We have all read this a lot: “Baltimore hasn’t reached the Fall Classic since 1983; Kansas City last made it to the playoffs in 1985.” (Trivia: who did Baltimore play in 1983? Who did the Royals play? What were the results?)

That 1983 Series was broadcast on ABC. The announcers? Al Michaels, Howard Cosell and Earl Weaver, who had retired as manager of the Os after the 1982 season.

In 1985 ABC had the Series again, but Cosell was removed from the broadcast team because his recent book had criticized everybody he’d ever worked with. In his place was Tim McCarver, making his first World Series broadcasting appearance.

To today’s game, then. The Orioles start Chris Tillman, who was 13-6 with a 3.34 ERA during the regular season and 1-0 with a 3.60 ERA in the ALDS against the Tigers. He went five innings in that game, giving up 2 runs on 4 hits and striking out 6. The Royals go with James Shields, 14-8 with a 3.21 ERA in the regular season and 1-0 with a 3.00 ERA in the ALDS against the Angels. He went six innings, giving up 2 runs on 6 hits and striking out 6. Both teams have excellent bullpens and their managers are unafraid to use them.

The conventional narrative for this series seems to be “Royals run, Orioles bash.” We’ll see.