Our friends in California are telling us that the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (ahem) are leaning toward picking “series A” in the Division Series should they finish with the best record.
That means, should the Red Sox wind up as the Wild Card, the playoff schedule would break down like this:
Wednesday 10/1 @ LAA
Friday 10/3 @ LAA
Sunday 10/5 @ BOS
Monday 10/6 @ BOS (if nec)
Wednesday 10/8 @ LAA (if nec)
All games will be on TBS.
What this means is that neither team will need a 4th starter (good news for the Red Sox, no Byrd or Wakefield needed… no big deal for the Angels, who run 5 deep with Garland and Weaver on the back end).
It also means that each team’s top bullpen guys can go every day with some semblance of rest. Good news for the Angels, who have new save king Francisco Rodriguez finishing games, and a solid crew in front of him… better news for the Red Sox, who have found getting to Jonathan Papelbon to be a challenge most nights.
All this adds up to me being a bit surprised the Angels didn’t pick the Thursday start, which plays to their strengths (deeper rotation and bullpen) and the Red Sox weaknesses (short rotation and questionable middle relief).