We’re officially out of wild card season and that means... ALDS Game 1s today! First the Chicago White Sox will face off against the Houston Astros. I obviously don’t need to mention that we’re rooting for the White Sox here.
The White Sox were the first team to clinch their division in 2021, winning the AL Central 93-69 for the year. In 2020 they found themselves in the AL Wild Card game but lost in that series to the A’s in just three games.
Lance McCullers Jr. will take the mound for the Astros in Game 1, and he’s won two games this year against the White Sox (pitching 2.08 against them). The White Sox will need to not only break through and get to the Astros bullpen, but pick up their defense if they’re going to have a shot against the Astros. They’ve got some young, fun players on the team who promise to make the most of their postseason run.
Tim Anderson is batting .352/.373/.598 (43-122) with seven doubles, seven home runs, 19 RBI, 28 runs scored and 12 multi-hit efforts over his last 27 games. pic.twitter.com/Lr48Kjo8Qv— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) October 2, 2021
Combine that with the oldest active manager and Hall-of-Famer Tony La Russa leading the charge, the White Sox feel confident they’re on the path to winning it all this year:
"This is really just the first of our goals"@whitesox SVP & GM Rick Hahn joined #TheRundown to chat about the club's success and the excitement entering the Postseason as a threat to win it all. pic.twitter.com/1DeFGxGm58— MLB Network (@MLBNetwork) October 4, 2021
Then the Red Sox will take on the Tampa Bay Rays. The Red Sox made it through on Tuesday night, beating out the Yankees 6-2. It was the first time the two rivals have played in a winner-takes-all Wild Card Game.
This is the Rays third consecutive year in the postseason, who again won the AL East this year. It’s also the third time since 2008 that the Rays will face the Red Sox in the postseason. And though the conversation about the 100-win club has focused on the Dodgers-Giants this year, the Rays won exactly 100 games this season (to the Red Sox 92-70).
The Rays will start out with Shane McClanahan (10-6, 3.43 ERA) and they’ll hope their dynamic offense will back him up. 20 year old phenom Wander Franco should be fun to watch as he has been all season both offensively and defensively:
Q: Why do we like Wander Franco?— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) September 1, 2021
A: He gets on base. pic.twitter.com/bUU0t4uNYX
Not wasting any time tonight pic.twitter.com/0I1t7V6cyF— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) September 30, 2021
Teams: Chicago White Sox @ Houston Astros
Time: 1:07 p.m. Pacific on FS1
Pitching: CWS: Lance Lynn (11-6, 2.69 ERA)
Hou: Lance McCullers Jr. (13-5, 3.16 ERA)
Teams: Boston Red Sox @ Tampa Bay Rays
Time: 5:07 p.m. Pacific on FS1
Pitching: Bos: Eduardo Rodriguez (13-8, 4.74 ERA)
TB: Shane McClanahan (10-6, 3.43 ERA)