Take The Long Way Home?

Whenever the Tigers and Twins settle the AL Central the Yankees will have a decision to make.  Do they want the eight-day ALDS or the seven-day ALDS?

The conventional wisdom is to take the 8-day series which would allow the Yankees to only use Sabathia, Pettitte and Burnett, but consider what that would allow Detroit to do.  Depending on what they need to do this week, the Tigers could potentially throw Verlander twice, Jackson twice and Porcello once.  That’s just as good, or maybe better than the Yankees 1-2-3 punch.

In addition, the 8-day series would allow both sides to rest their bullpens a lot.  With days off between each of the first three games and Game 4+5, you could use certainly relievers more frequently and longer.  That could be a potential advantage for the Tigers as well because their bullpen isn’t as deep as the Yankees’ and therefore would be worn out more in a the 7-day series.

The good news for New York is they don’t have to pick until they know who their opponent is.  If the Twins take the AL Central, I think the 8-day ALDS becomes the obvious choice.  But, if the Tigers are the opponent, some thought needs to go into the choice.  I would want to examine the pitchers the Tigers could throw twice in the series carefully before choosing the 8-day option.