LDS Day One: The Three Most Important People

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Giving credence to the idea that a home field advantage helps wins championships, all three home teams won their LDS games yesterday and took a tidy 1-0 lead in their best-of-five series. The Phillies topped the Rockies 5-1 in a game marred by umpiring mistakes and some wacky windy weather. The Yankees beat the Twins behind solid pitching and sexy line drive hitting. The Dodgers upended the Cardinals despite both teams leaving enough runners on base to fill out the entire cast of West Side Story. Yes, both the Jets and the Sharks and Officer Krupke.

Let's take a gander at three individuals who, for better or worse, made a big difference in whether or not their teams succeeded:

  • Yadier Molina, Cardinals: What is it with catchers this week? First, Tigers backstop Gerald Laird leaves 10 runners on base in the tiebreaker loss to the Twins and now, Molina led the day with six stranded gentlemen. Molina strode to the plate five times and recorded only one hit; naturally the one hit came when no runners were on base. In the first inning and the bases loaded with a run already in, Molina killed an early rally with a GIDP. In the third, he flew out with two on. Fella struck out in the ninth with a runner on first and the team down but three runs.

  • Cliff Lee, Phillies: Clifton Phifer was cool under pressure in his first big-league postseason start despite the swirling Philly winds and the expectations from the WFC crowd. He pitched a complete game win over the hot Rockies and came within one strike and a Troy Tulowitzki double of recording a shutout. Lee struck out five and allowed six hits while walking nobody. Fella even had a single and a stolen base, the first ever by a Philly pitcher in the postseason. Lee's start-to-finish performance erased any worry that a bullpen member would blow that game up; the entire relief staff is now rested and waiting for Cole Hamels to leave the game after five innings today because he hates afternoon affairs.

  • Alex Rodriguez, Yankees: Just kidding, despite the fact that A-Rod recorded two big-time RBI, this final spot has to go to Captain Fantastic himself, Derek Jeter, who went two-for-two with two RBI, two walks, a tater tot, and three runs scored. Going four-for-four in reaching base is exactly the right way to be a leadoff hitter; take note, Jimmy Rollins. Sometimes it's good to watch some pitches fly by and draw a walk! Jeter didn't make any spectacular plays in the infield to help out his pal CC Sabathia; in fact, a couple grounders got by him and became singles. Time to go back for some more fitness training, Jeet.

So, who did I miss?


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11 Comments

Jimmy Rollins only gets baseball tips from Willie Mays Hays.

I would have said Brigham Young, Joe Smith and one of the Osmonds.

Artie,
We covered that yesterday
http://www.walkoffwalk.com/2009/10/lets-fist-out-some-quick-and-d.html

Starting with Chief at 1:58

The Dodger bullpen needs some love, too. After Game 1 starter and "ace" Randy Wolf was yanked with the bases loaded and 2-out in the third, Jeff Weaver closed that door unscathed. In all, the Artful Bullpen threw 5.1 innings of 1-run/4-hit/no walk baseball, which is a lot better than Wolfie could come up with.

They would have Nick, but that was way past Rob's bedtime

All,
I apologize for making a joke that someone has made on the internet before me. Yesterday, work was actually busy, so I didn't have time to dick around. - Artie Fufkin

Don't mind BC Twins Fan. He's a little raw from all the crying last night.

Artie,
I didn't mean it like that, Sorry

Rob,
Suck it!!!

@matt

Actually, I think he missed it because he was standing in the Great Hall with the rest of the stadium watching the live feed of the Yankee team shower. They used to only offer that for Legends Box seatholders, but they opened it up for everyone during the playoffs.

Also, a stadium has something called "The Great Hall"? Ahhh boooooo.

Watch your mouth, NJ-PANIC-K, or I will have no choice but to remove your hat by force.

That lady was so rude. REMOVE YOUR HAT, MADAM.

And if I, WHEN I, become a world-renowned DJ, I will definitely go by the name Panic-K.

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