There were four games tonight with important playoff implications. Three were won by one run. The fourth, by two.
I'm lucky enough to have watching significant heaps of each game with the help of picture-in-a-picture, an itching clicker finger, access to MLB.TV, and an ability to multitask with a full bladder.
And it wasn't just the result of each game that mattered the most. It was the cumulative effect that built to a crescendo as each game reached its climax.
It's late, but I thought it might be interesting to look at the events as they enfolded. I kept a log of sorts while emailing some friends.
The Phils were leading 4-2. The Red Sox led the Yankees, 5-3. Indians just tied it in the bottom of the 9th and the Cubs just took a 2-1 lead in the 8th
The 'Stros are bobbling the ball all over the place. Wickman just got a 1-2-3 inning in the top of the 10th. Boy, does he look more and more like Rube Foster every day. And I'm talking about Foster as a league executive, not as a player
How depressing--Marlon Byrd just scored against the Phils. Still up 4-3. But runner on third two in ninth.
Runners are the corners for the Cubs, still 3-2
Indians-Sox still tied in the 11th.
The Yankees just lost, 5-3, and are tied with the Red Sox for the division lead...
Tied 3-3 in Houston. Phillies win!..
Cubs just had their second runner in two innings thrown out at the plate. Still 3-3, runners at the corners, 1 out.
Todd Walker singles in the go-ahead run!..
Sox just walked the bases full, 1 out, bottom of 11th. Broussard up
Astros leave a man on third. Cubbies win, 4-3, same score as Phils.
[Note: I am going to the Phils-Nats game in DC on Sunday and am frothy with the possibilities.]
The Indians left the bases loaded with Aaron Boone grounding out to end the inning. Broussard was called out on an outside pitch. The home plate ump seems to have had an amorphous strike zone all night. Still 1-1 middle of the 12th.
And Cliff Politte is coming in for the Sox. This'll be good
It's a shame that this Indians-Chisox doesn't affect the division title. It's been amazing.
The Indians just got robbed to end the 12th. Sizemore slid into second on a ball grounded to Crede who lollygagged the ball into second. The replays showed that Sizemore slid in ahead of the throw, but the ump called him out. Wedge went ballistic.
Then in the 13th Willie Harris triples. Scott Podsednik, the [alleged] catalyst for their offense, bunted on his own, and hit it too hard right to first. Harris was out in a rundown. Podsendik went to second on the play. They walked Konerko to face Gload who was 0-for-5 with 3 Ks on the night, and he doubles in two runs. 3-1 Sox
Bellirard just homered with two outs in the ninth both Ks. 3-2. Jenks looked like he would get them 1-2-3.
[Sox win, 3-2.]
Here's a quick rundown of the playoff scenarios:
Phils win two, Astros lose two: result is the Phils are the wild card.
Phils win two, Astros split: playoff for NL wild card.
Phils split, Astros lose both: playoff for NL wild card.
Astros win two, Phils do whatever: the Astros are the wild card.
Sox/Yanks win two, Indians win two: Sox/Yanks winner wins division, Indians are the wild card.
Sox/Yanks win two, Indians split: Sox/Yanks winner wins division, playoff for the wild card.