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.

Oct 23

World Series Game One

St. Louis at Boston, 1:30pm HST, 4:30pm PST, 7:30pm EST on Fox.

David Pinto has a good analysis of the two teams, as does Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com.

One more thing to think about: this World Series is the last hurrah for Tim McCarver of Fox; he’s announced his retirement at the end of the season.