Thursday, October 18, 2012

Tigers Going To World Series, Among Other Things

I wouldn't have believed it possible about two months ago, but the Detroit Tigers just swept the Yankees in the ALCS, sending them on to the championship series next week.  Who they'll face there is still up in the air: St. Louis leads San Francisco 2 games to 1, and are up 2-1 in the 4th inning of Game 4.

In other baseball news: there was a casual mention during one of the playoff games this month that "... of course, Houston will be moving to the American League next season."  That would be the Houston Astros, for those who don't follow baseball.  Now, just as Milwaukee moving from the American League to the National League in 1995 felt "wrong" to me for years afterward, I'd expect  this transfer to make me go, "Huh?" whenever I'd see the Jays playing them so much next season. 

Or maybe it won't.  Because the deeper implication here is that this will both balance the two leagues relative to each other - each will have 15 teams, where there'd previously been 16 in the NL and 14 in the AL - and 'unbalance' them internally by going to an odd number of teams.  The significance of this latter change stems from the fact that baseball teams play most days, with usually 1 or 2 off days per week.  For that to happen with an odd number of teams in each league, there are going to have to be a lot more interleague games, starting next year.  In fact, most days will feature at least one interleague match, since 15 teams obviously can't all be active if they can only play each other.  This means interleague play will become much more common, making the interleague matchup of the World Series less special, in a sense.  So that should be a bit odd.

Having said that, I'm kind of looking forward to the new 15-team league setup.

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