Last night was about as emotional a night as I have ever had watching baseball. I know some of you haters are going to hate. But that send off of Mariano Rivera from Yankee Stadium has to be one of the most wonderful things I have ever watched. It did not matter that these current Yankees could play twenty more games against the Rays and lose them all. What mattered is that the dynasty in New York ended when Derek Jeter and Andy Pettitte went out to the mound to take Mariano Rivera out of the game. What an incredible moment in baseball.
As for the picks, they went 7-2, which continues the terrific final full week of games I am having. The two incorrect picks were the Mets as Dillon Gee did not have it last night and the Blue Jays as Mark Buehrle did not have it either.
The last full weekend folks. Friday's picks:
- The Red Sox over the Orioles: Who knows how long Clay Buchholz will pitch in this game as it will be a tune up for the playoffs. Scott Feldman has not pitched well for the Orioles overall and the Red Sox bats do not need to take the day off. But the Orioles have a good lineup too.
- The Bay Rays over the Blue Jays: The final battle of the Ays for the season. The Rays are not in the clear yet as they could lose three and not make the Wild Card. So they have to keep winning. Jeremy Hellickson will be on a short leash I think. R.A. Dickey will try to prevent the win.
- The Tigers over the Marlins: What kind of effort will the Tigers bring? Hard to say. Rick Porcello is probably making his last appearance of the season. I will be surprised if he makes the post season roster and if he does, it will be as a reliever. Tom Koehler goes for the Marlins.
- The Brewers over the Mets: Crap, this will be the fourth home team in a row I am picking against. That is not good. But I still think Yovani Gallardo beats Carlos Torres. David Wright got beaned last night, which also is not good.
- The Reds over the Pirates: How weird is it that these two teams will finish the regular season out together and then go right to the play-in game to determine the Wild Card winner? Well, at least there will not be a lot of traveling. They are, I believe, playing for which team will be the home team. A.J. Burnett goes against Homer Bailey in this one.
- The Braves over the Phillies: Again, just a meaningless game. Kris Medlen will look at it like a tuneup. Cliff Lee gets his last start of the season for the Phillies. Lefties do not phase the Braves much.
- The Indians over the Twins: Can the Indians keep winning? Can they run the last two weeks? I have never seen it done before, but that is their only option with the Rangers only a game back. Corey Kluber tries to keep it going against Pedro Hernandez.
- The White Sox over the Royals: Will James Shields have any motivation with nothing to shoot for anymore? He was big down the stretch. My prediction is that Chris Sale will out-pitch him tonight and then it is just a question of if the bullpen can nail it down.
- The Yankees over the Astros: The Yankees get to end the season in Houston and perhaps can win a game or two. They certainly have died the last two weeks though and have not announced a pitcher for tonight. I think either Phelps or someone like that will get the call. Brett Oberholtzer goes for the Astros.
- The Cardinals over the Cubs: You have to give it up for Travis Wood, who has pitched really well all season, stared down the ace of every opposing team and held his own. The Cardinals at home though are tough to beat. Lance Lynn tries to clinch it for the Cards.
- The Diamondbacks over the Nationals: I am sort of not sure why Stephen Strasburg is pitching this game. He has missed his last three starts. Why not shut him down? Either way, he will not go long into the game and Patrick Corbin will and should win.
- The Dodgers over the Rockies: Clayton Kershaw gets the start, but how deep into the game will he pitch? Long enough for the Dodgers to get a lead off of Collin McHugh to win the game.
- The Athletics over the Mariners: This ought to be interesting with Bartolo Colon going against Felix Hernandez. I don't know how healthy the latter is and the Mariners' offense has fallen off again. Colon is the choice then.
- The Padres over the Giants: Ryan Vogelsong will be glad when this season is over. He did not have a good year. Burch Smith, on the other hand, is having fun in his first extended shot at the big leagues.
And the Game of the Day:
- The Rangers over the Angels: I think the Rangers will not give C.J. Wilson a very good feeling to end his season upon. Alexi Ogando will win at home. The Rangers are still hoping to sneak into the Wild Card picture and like a vulture are waiting for the Indians to lose.
Games of the Day: 103-70