The Giants aren’t playing October baseball, and that stinks, but that won’t stop me from watching. The postseason thus far has been very entertaining and I’ve enjoyed the games. I thought it would be a fun post to share my postseason rooting order — and see what teams you guys/gals are rooting for — as we watch this crazy thing called playoff baseball.
Rooting order (from most best to worst):
1. Tampa Bay Rays – I’ve always really, really been a big fan of the way Tampa Bay runs its baseball operations. It’s hard to find a more forward thinking baseball group in the game. They compete in the ultra-tough AL East and they do it on a shoestring budget of a $41M payroll. That’s the second-to-last payroll in baseball (ahead of only the Royals) and it’s an extremely impressive feat. To put that figure in Giants terms, the team will owe $31M to just Zito and Rowand in 2012. That’s approximately 75% of Tampa Bay’s present payroll. Yikes. I’m also a huge Evan Longoria fan — did I mention that he’s making just $2M this year? I wouldn’t mind seeing the Giants try to lock up Posey on a similar deal.
2. Milwaukee Brewers – In the postseason, my rooting allegiances usually stick with NL teams. The Brewers have players like Prince Fielder, Rickie Weeks, and Ryan Braun — all guys I enjoy watching play. I’ve also had this weird obsession with Craig Counsell, and he’s on the team, so Brewers it is! It also doesn’t hurt matters that they’re playing the D-Backs right now.
3. Philadelphia Phillies – I might catch some heat for this one, considering the Giants are somewhat rivals of the Phils, but I like pitching, and the Phillies are loaded with good pitchers. If you don’t enjoy watching Halladay, Lee, or Hammels pitch, then something is broken inside you. Shane Victorino is somewhat detestable, but I can overlook him to get to the amazing pitching. The Phillies had a team ERA+ of 128 this year.
4. Detroit Tigers – The Tigers get a boost on my list because they’re opening against the Yankees, but they’ve also got several players that I like: Miguel Cabrera, Justin Verlander, and Victor Martinez. And any team that has Doug Fister, well, that’s a team that I’m going to root for.
5. Texas Rangers – You could probably flip-flop the Rangers and Tigers on this list. I like both equally. I wouldn’t mind seeing the Rangers get a title — the team has never won a title. Ian Kinsler, Josh Hamilton, and Adrian Beltre are all players that I like. Nelson Cruz is pretty awesome, too.
6. St. Louis Cardinals – Albert Pujols is a baseball freak, and Lance Berkman falls into my beloved category of “Fat Guys That Play Baseball”, but the Cards receive the Tony La Russa penalty, which knocks them down several spots on my list. Also, if I have to hear again that Dave Duncan is a pitching magician (though, not undeservedly so) I might have to mute the TV.
7. New York Yankees – Obligatory Yankee hate goes here.
8. Arizona Diamondbacks – Obligatory D-Back hate goes here. If the D-Backs win the World Series, I’ll just be annoyed. I would place the Dodgers, Padres, or Rockies in this same spot. I’m unable to root for a division rival in the postseason. The D-Backs seem extra annoying this year with their “hitting” and “competent pitching”. Those jerks.
Comment Starter: Your order, please.