The Major League Baseball season has finally come to an end. The longest season of all major sports in the USA has now made way for one of the most interesting postseason starts in sports. While the MLB season has 162 games, there is a very important one game playoff that takes place as soon as it ends, in order for two wildcard teams to make it into the real tournament. This year’s games feature the Yankees, the Astros, the Cubs, and the Pirates, four teams that have played as hard as any this season. The NL matchup for the wildcard pits two teams, that are extremely familiar with each other, in a nine inning winner take all showdown. The Cubs and Pirates are in the same division, so they have played a whopping 19 games against each other this season, with the Cubs winning 11 times. Although the Cubs have a history with the Pirates, season series records don’t mean much in the playoffs since it is up to the players and the fans to bring enough energy to get their team to another game. The Yankees and Astros have played a few games this season, but neither team has managed to show that they are truly superior to the other, I am a Yankee fan so my allegiance is set, but this game looks to be a tough one for both teams. The MLB wildcard games are the most exciting games of the season, four teams enter with only nine innings to show that they belong in the playoffs, I can’t wait to see who comes out on top as these teams will definitely give it their all in the hopes of reaching the championship round.
The New York Yankees have been on an absolute tear over the past 10 games, a team that many thought was on the decline has seen new life thanks to their lineup’s extreme versatility. The Yankees have scored 90 runs in the last 10 games and they are showing little sign of slowdown. At the beginning of the season the team looked as though they would only be able to live on the strength of the players at the top of the batting order, but the team has shown that they can perfectly adjust to any changes injuries or slumps may bring. During this hot streak the bottom of the Yankee lineup has been hitting extremely well, they have even outperformed the guys at the heart of the lineup in a few games. I am a Yankee fan so I don’t want to “jinx” their success, but it isn’t a completely ridiculous thought that this team may go very far in the playoffs. The Yankees have not been a good team over the last couple of years, and while this year’s team seemed overwhelmingly average, the Yankees decided to pass on any major team improving trades. The story behind the Yankees’ lack of movement at the trade deadline was the team’s desire to keep their prized pitching prospect, Luis Severino, and while the jury is still out on Severino’s big league productivity, many people believe he is “the real deal.” Severino looks to make his first major league start tonight for the surging Yankees, and I as a Yankee fan, would love to see him kick off his MLB career with a legendary performance. Hopefully the team’s decision to keep him will pay off both this season and in the long term.