Tagged: playoffs

Episode 32 – Cardinals, Tigers, and Giants! Oh My!

Three Up Three Down is back to break down all the postseason action! We discuss our favorite Division Series and who we think will take the Championship Series all the way to the World Series.  Not only that, Mapes turns the tables in our “Defend Yo Self” segment where the guys back up their Rookie of the Year and Cy Young picks. Let us know what you think!

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, and subscribe to the podcast!

or use this link to download on iTunes

http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewPodcast?id=508049520

Twitter: @3U3D
Facebook: Three Up, Three Down

Enjoy!

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Video Reaction: Cardinals Complete Game 5 Comeback, Advance to NLCS

Wow, what a crazy, improbable, unbelievable Division Series week we just witnessed. This is why baseball is pure magic. Whether or not you are a fan of the four teams left, you can’t deny that they all earned their way in. After four Game 5’s in four series, we finally got the NLCS and ALCS matchups finalized with a ridiculous game in Washington.

In the type of game that has become routine for the defending champion St. Louis Cardinals, they laughed at a 6-0 deficit in the third inning and slowly chipped away to cut the lead to 7-5 by the top of the ninth inning.

Luckily for Cardinals fans, this team is at it’s best when down to their last strike of the season. With the bases loaded, Daniel Descalso hit a game-tying single, then came around to score on a single by rookie shortstop Pete Kozma. The Cards held on to win 9-7 and advance to the NLCS, shocking the nation’s capitol and pastime’s fan base in the process…again.

My girlfriend is the biggest Cardinals fan in the world, and this is her reaction video to watching that top of the 9th inning. She had to record, turn off her phone, and watch later – I already knew what had happened but kept my best poker face on for the next few hours as we watched it back. She had no idea I was taping her reaction. But check out what pure, unadulterated love for a baseball team looks like:

That’s a good fan if I’ve ever seen one. Good luck to the Cardinals, Giants, Tigers and Yankees in the Championship Series, starting tonight in New York!

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @3u3d or LIKE Three Up, Three Down on Facebook!

– Jeremy Dorn (@Jamblinman)

Episode 31 – MVPs, Playoffs, and The Golden Jock

This episode is all about the playoffs and postseason wrap-up.  We debate the tight race between Mike Trout and Miguel Cabrera for AL MVP and then switch to Buster Posey vs Ryan Braun for the NL MVP. Then the postseason takes over as we give our predictions for the World Series and recap our preseason over/under picks and who gets to wear ‘The Golden Jock’ for the first year. We’ll have you chopping, doing the Bernie, and bird watching all throughout the playoffs.

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, and subscribe to the podcast!

or use this link to download on iTunes

http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewPodcast?id=508049520

Twitter: @3U3D
Facebook: Three Up, Three Down

Enjoy!

Do Any NL Teams DESERVE the 2nd Wild Card?

As you’re well aware by now, there is quite a heated battle for both newly instituted second Wild Card slots. With just about ten games remaining for everyone, there are no less than four teams in each league fighting for that last spot and a one-game playoff to move to the Divisional Series.

Let me first acknowledge a few things so you can’t yell at me later:

1) Yes, it has made the stretch run much more exciting. Just like the doctor ordered.

2) I understand that most professional sports leagues have at least 12 teams total in the playoffs, still more than MLB.

3) Every team that is still in the chase for that second spot, regardless of league, is a “good” club.

Now that we got that out of the way, let’s cut to the chase. Is there really a National League team that deserves the second Wild Card? After all, the division leaders have all already clinched a playoff spot, and the Atlanta Braves are six games better than the next best contender.

The defending champion St. Louis Cardinals are currently holding the coveted fifth seed, 2.5 games ahead of the Milwaukee Brewers and 3.0 ahead of the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Philadelphia Phillies and Arizona Diamondbacks are barely hanging on, 4 and 5 games back, respectively.

Of those five, only the Cardinals have clinched a .500 season with a week and a half of games remaining. Again, don’t get me wrong. Those are some good teams. Among them we have the third-best team ERA in the league (L.A.), an offense led by the reigning league MVP (Milwaukee) and a team with the most dangerous starting rotation in baseball (Philadelphia).

But all these teams have seen their fair share of struggles. Hitting rough patches isn’t anything new – eventual World Champions will take their lumps over a long season as well.

If the Cardinals, Brewers, Dodgers, Phillies or D’Backs are going to sneak into the playoffs on the strength of a new Wild Card spot that was likely designed with the intention of getting the Angels, Rangers, Red Sox, Yankees and Tigers into the A.L. postseason most years (Oops!), why do they get a do-or-die opportunity against a far superior team?

There is no question that the Braves have been a better team than all the above listed. You can’t really argue with that large of a gap in the standings, but I can argue that it’s absolutely ridiculous that they will face one of the lesser teams in a one-game playoff that determines who continues on in the playoffs. 

Putting such a fantastic season on the line in a one-game playoff where literally anything could happen seems crazy to me. Not that Bud Selig has ever done much to dispel the notion that he’s a little cuckoo, but this one is just too much. I appreciate the excitement the new Wild Card spot is bringing to the pennant chase, but I’d be pretty annoyed if I was a Braves fan.

Atlanta has arranged their schedule to send either Kris Medlen or Tim Hudson to the hill in a must-win. Both are great pitchers, but just because of the new rule, you could see them facing Chris Carpenter, Adam Wainwright, Clayton Kershaw, Roy Halladay…a whole slew of starters who have huge-game experience and success to their names.

The Braves could legitimately take that Wild Card spot by nearly ten games over the fifth seed and get sent right back home because of one, single game. As we’ve seen a million times in the past, anything can happen in a baseball game. The Astros beat the Reds a couple of weeks ago – why couldn’t that happen in a one-game playoff?

A bizarre error could change a game. A bad call. One wild pitch. In such a long season, it seems preposterous to allow a team that really earned a postseason berth to be in peril of going home at the hands of an 82-win team based on one game. At the very least, it should be a three-game series to truly determine (in most cases) a winner.

And don’t you even get me started on the fact that the Braves or whoever beats them in the one-game playoff will get the first two Division Series games at home. That’s a whole different beast.

So, it’s a very legitimate question that I’m posing here: Do any National League teams deserve that second Wild Card spot? And does the new postseason structure get re-thunk if the Braves get worked in the one-game playoff? We would love to hear your take on the issue, so comment and VOTE below!

If you like what you see, you can follow @3u3d on Twitter and LIKE Three Up, Three Down on Facebook!

– Jeremy Dorn (@Jamblinman)

Episode 29 – Playoff Panic and Movie Premieres

Your starting 5 are suited up and ready to talk baseball once again.  We touch on the happenings around baseball from Yunel Escobar to the Playoff Panic meter for each team involved in these closely contested Playoff races. The movie critics come out as well, when we discuss our favorite baseball movies in lieu of “Trouble With the Curve” debuting on Friday. All that and more inside this episode of “Three Up, Three Down”.

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, and subscribe to the podcast!

or use this link to download on iTunes

http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewPodcast?id=508049520

Twitter: @3U3D
Facebook: Three Up, Three Down

Enjoy!

Episode 27 – You Can’t Spell ‘Playoffs’ Without O’s and A’s

Three Up, Three Down touches ’em all this week as they discuss Strasburg’s Innings Limit, Playoff Chances, Fantasy Pick-Ups, and even have special guest, Lindsay Guentzel, 2012 MLB FanCave Dweller, to discuss the 2014 All-Star Game. Take a listen!

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, and subscribe to the podcast!

or use this link to download on iTunes

http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewPodcast?id=508049520

Twitter: @3U3D
Facebook: Three Up, Three Down

Enjoy!

Baltimore Orioles: Is Adding Randy Wolf a Good Move?

It seems like the Orioles are just snatching up pitchers like those damn hungry, hungry hippos. And they aren’t doing it in the lavish fashion that a certain Southern Californian team is…

If you believe MLB.com’s Orioles beat writer Britt Ghiroli (and you should!) on Twitter, the O’s are close to inking recently-cut lefty Randy Wolf.

This potential move comes just days after Baltimore worked out a waiver trade with the D’Backs to acquire another lefty starter in Joe Saunders. Apparently the Orioles aren’t very interested in letting their Cinderella ship sink like the Pittsburgh Pirates seem to enjoy doing.

So do you like this move? Comment below and VOTE in the poll!

All indications point to the signing being imminent, and if it does happen, it could significantly improve a struggling Orioles staff.

This willingness to make such moves shows me that the Orioles’ front office is very serious about their playoff run this season. Adding Wolf and Saunders to a top two of Wei-Yin Chen and Jason Hammel (when he comes back from injury) may very well be the deciding factor in Baltimore’s quest at a surprising playoff berth.

We know they have the offense and the bullpen, but the rotation has been shaky all year, and especially so after Hammel went down. Wolf has a lot of years on his resumé, but the numbers aren’t especially impressive in 2012: 3-10/5.69/1.57 in 24 starts with Milwaukee.

Despite some big time struggles in Milwaukee this year – hence the reason he was available in the first place – Wolf has a reputation for being a big-game pitcher and will bring invaluable veteran leadership to a very young staff. Ghiroli also pointed out on Twitter that Wolf might be primarily used as another lefty reliever, though some starts do seem likely.

Wolf isn’t all wisdom and experience though. I really believe the southpaw has some good innings left in the tank. If it means anything to you skeptical O’s fans, Wolf has a 2.89 ERA in September since 2009. That’s got to be worth something.

Anyway, a playoff race and a new home might do Wolf good. And if he throws well in the few starts he gets, the Orioles will be even more dangerous down the stretch.

I’ll give credit to CBS’ Jon Heyman for this tidbit: This move would potentially give the Orioles five lefty starters. That’s one way to neutralize the Yankees’ lefty-heavy lineup.

The Orioles currently sit just 3.5 games back from those dreaded Yankees, and holding on to a slim Wild Card lead. It’s the first chance this team has had to make the playoffs in a LONG time. Time will tell if this move pays off!

Don’t forget to follow @3u3d on Twitter and LIKE Three Up, Three Down on Facebook!

– Jeremy Dorn (@Jamblinman)