The Orioles secured a significant advantage when they clinched a bye through the Wild Card round. Any team can drop the first game of a series—even when facing an inferior opponent—but the clubs that fell yesterday now find themselves a day away from elimination.
Today marks the first day when skippers truly manage like there is no tomorrow. Everyone should be available out of the bullpen, and starters will likely face a quick hook. So buckle up, this is what postseason baseball is all about!
3:08 - Texas Rangers (5) @ Tampa Bay Rays (4), ABC (Rangers lead, 1-0)
Starters: RHP Nathan Eovaldi (TEX) vs. RHP Zach Eflin (TBR)
Can you imagine if the Orioles played defense like the Rays did on Tuesday? The Rays shot themselves in the foot multiple times in a 4-0 loss. Tampa recorded six hits but failed to score against Jordan Montgomery and a pair of relievers. Randy Arozarena doubled for the Rays only extra-base hit in Game 1.
The Orioles will face the winner of this series in the ALDS. Regardless of your preference, it’s easy to root for a third game here.
4:38 - Blue Jays (6) @ Twins (3), ESPN (Twins lead, 1-0)
Starters: RHP José Berríos (TOR) vs. RHP Sonny Gray (MIN)
The Twins snapped a cruel 18-game losing streak in the postseason with yesterday’s victory. All of a sudden, Minnesota will send Sonny Gray to the mound with an opportunity to win a series.
The Blue Jays only scored once in Game 1. Carlos Correa gunned down a runner at home plate, and Griffin Jax stranded Vlad Guerrero Jr. after a leadoff double in the eighth.
Could we lose two AL East teams on only the second day of the postseason?
7:08 - Diamondbacks (6) @ Brewers (3), ESPN2 (Diamondbacks lead, 1-0)
Starters: RHP Zac Gallen (AZ) vs. TBD (MIL)
Both bullpens will enter Game 2 with a few laps already under their belt. Arizona starter Brandon Pfaadt failed to complete three innings in Game 1, and Milwaukee’s ace Corbin Burnes exited after only four frames.
8:08 - Marlins (5) @ Phillies (4), ESPN (Phillies lead, 1-0)
Starters: LHP Braxton Garrett (MIA) vs. RHP Aaron Nola (PHI)
Aaron Nola tossed 6.2 scoreless innings against the Cardinals in Game 2 of the Wild Card round last season. Braxton Garrett has never pitched in the postseason.