ALDS-A: Oakland Athletics vs. Detroit Tigers

Game Date/Time Matchup/Result Breakdown
1 Friday, October 4 Tigers 3 at Athletics 2
Recap | Box
WP: M. Scherzer (1-0)
LP: B. Colon (0-1)
SV: J. Benoit (1)
2 Saturday, October 5 Tigers 0 at Athletics 1
Recap | Box
WP: G. Balfour (1-0)
LP: A. Alburquerque (0-1)
3 Monday, October 7 Athletics 6 at Tigers 3
Recap | Box
WP: J. Parker (1-0)
LP: A. Sanchez (0-1)
SV: G. Balfour (1)
4 Tuesday, October 8 Athletics 6 at Tigers 8
Recap | Box
WP: M. Scherzer (2-0)
LP: S. Doolittle (0-1)
5 Thursday October 10 Tigers 3 at Athletics 0
Recap | Box
WP - J. Verlander (1-0)
LP - S. Gray (0-1)
SV - J. Benoit (2)
Tigers win Best-of-Five Series 3-2


Best-of-Five series to advance to the American League Championship Series.

The difference between the A’s 2013 and 2012 seasons is that they turned on the gas and caught the Texas Rangers sooner and had a bit more time to prepare for October baseball.

The A’s overtook the Rangers atop the AL West on Sept. 6 and were able to clinch the division on Sept. 22 as opposed to leaving it to the final day like they did last season.

What comes next for the A’s, though, is the reality that they have been – for the most part – post-season failures since reaching three-straight World Series in the late 1980s and early 1990s.

Oh, sure, the A’s would like to point to their Moneyball success and proudly show you the math on what they pay for their team vs. the wins those players have been able to rack up over the past 13 years, and they’re right to do so.

However, all that regular season success can only overshadow a 1-6 playoff series record since the turn of the Century for so long.

The Detroit Tigers, meanwhile, enter the 2013 post-season in familiar fashion.

The Tigers won the AL Central for the third straight season on the back of another standout year from Miguel Cabrera and elite pitching, this time anchored by Max Scherzer instead of Justin Verlander.

What’s different his post-season is a change in expectations.

Detroit squeaked by Oakland in the 2012 ALDS before sweeping the Yankees to make the World Series. The odds looked good for the Tigers to end their 28-year title drought, knowing that they could send Scherzer and Verlander – and their combined 33 wins and 470 strikeouts – out against the Giants for four or possibly even five of the Series’ seven games.

But Verlander got touched in the first game, highlighted by Pablo Sandoval’s three-homer game and the Giants never looked back.

The Tigers have done progressively better since 2011’s ALCS loss to the Texas Rangers, but there’s only one way to improve on 2012 and that’s by winning it all.

Detroit won its 2013 season series against Oakland 4-3. The two teams have split their two previous playoff meetings, with the A's claiming the 1972 ALCS (3-2) and the Tigers claiming the 2006 ALCS (4-0).

ALDS-B: Boston Red Sox vs. Tampa Bay Rays

Game Date/Time Matchup/Result Breakdown
1 Friday, October 4 Rays 2 at Red Sox 12
Recap | Box
WP: J. Lester (1-0)
LP: M. Moore (0-1)
2 Saturday, October 5 Rays 4 at Red Sox 7
Recap | Box
WP: J. Lackey (1-0)
LP: D. Price (0-1)
SV: K. Uehara (1)
3 Monday, October 7 Red Sox 4 at Rays 5
Recap | Box
WP - F. Rodney (1-0)
LP - K. Uehara (0-1)
4 Tue. Oct. 8 Red Sox 3 at Rays 1
Recap | Box
WP - C. Breslow
J. McGee (0-1)
SV - K. Uehara (2)
Red Sox win Best-of-Five Series 3-1


Best-of-Five series to advance to the American League Championship Series

The Boston Red Sox enjoyed a remarkable turnaround in their first season under new manager John Farrell.

After finishing the 2012 season last in the AL East with a 69-93 record (their lowest win total in a non-shortened season in almost half a century!) the Sox pulled a 180 this year, easily winning the East with a 97-win campaign.

The Sox return to the playoffs for the first time since 2009 and will be looking to do better than that year’s disappointing ALDS sweep at the hands of the Los Angeles Angels.

This year marks their ninth trip to the post-season over the last 16 seasons, but what will this October bring?

Will it be a third triumph in a decade since ending “The Curse”? Or will it be another first-round flame-out like ’98, ’05 or ’09?

The Rays got off on the wrong foot in 2013, enjoying just one game with a record better than .500 through their first three dozen.

They've run hot-and-cold all year, posting sub-.500 record sin three of the season's six months, but they've ridden a couple impressive runs – particularly a 23-4 run from late June through late July – to another wild card berth.

This marks their fourth post-season appearance in the last six years (since they dropped the "Devil" from their moniker), making them one of baseball's most consistent contenders over that span.

Where the Rays need better results, however, is once October begins. The Rays have not won a playoff series since securing the 2008 AL pennant, dropping back-to-back ALDS to the Texas Rangers.

However, David Price's heroics in their one-game play-in victory over Texas on Monday have helped erase some of those demons as far as the Rangers were concerned.

Alex Cobb picked up where Price left off, pitching nearly seven shutout innings in the AL Wild Card game, as the Rays blanked the Indians 4-0 to set up this series with the Sox.

Boston won its 2013 season series against Tampa Bay 12-7. These two teams have met on one previous occasion in the playoffs with the Rays winning the 2008 ALCS 4-3.

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