The Stars At Night…

Yup, I was the guy who picked the Rangers last in their division this year. It was all part of my epic whiff at the AL playoff teams (apart from the Yankees). I fared better in the NL, picking the Phillies, Braves and Giants to make it and my Yankees-Phillies World Series is still a possibility.

For now, let’s focus on Texas which just saw Cliff Lee dominate Tampa and send them into the ALCS for the first time ever. They are going to be a very dangerous opponent and the way they took apart Tampa tonight is pretty telling.

But, Cliff Lee just threw 120 pitches which convinces me he won’t be seen until Game 3 and the Rangers bullpen doesn’t equal that of the Rays. But, I keep going back to the night of July 8th. That’s when the Yankees came within a hair of acquiring Cliff Lee and I keep wondering if the Yankees will ultimately regret that whiff. At the time I wrote

I still think that trade would have been a slam dunk, but luckily the rotation is not the Yankees weakness. They didn’t need Lee in the way that other teams did. Where Lee could haunt them is in the playoffs and Texas will present a challenge with Lee and CJ Wilson, both lefties at the top of the rotation.

That’s a worry for the future, for now the needs are the same they were this morning. Figure out how to solidify the bullpen and find a bat that can offer some positional flexibility.

Obviously, the rotation didn’t quite turn out to be the strength it was at the time and the bat never showed up. On the plus side, Kerry Wood did a pretty good job of solidifying the pen. Will it all add up to a win in the ALCS? We will start to find out Friday.