With both New York teams having bad seasons, it seems that many of my friends have pretty much forgotten about baseball (and those who haven't all play fantasy). I've barely been following the sport myself, and it certainly didn't help that I wasn't able to watch last night's play-in game between the Rays and the Rangers because it ranked behind all the new fall tv shows I was DVRing as well as Monday night football in priority. But I do feel compelled to pay attention again now that it's the playoffs.
With the new wildcard play-in game, there are more teams than ever that are "in the playoffs", including the Cleveland Indians and Pittsburgh Pirates. (Are we back in the 90's?) Boston certainly surprised a lot of people this season, ending up tied for the best record in the majors despite being unheralded and playing in the toughest division. There are also many teams repeating playoff appearances from last year, including Detroit, Oakland, St. Louis, Atlanta, and Cincinnati. But the team that intrigues me the most is the LA Dodgers.
The Dodgers interest me for a number of reasons. They were first brought to my attention by this covers.com article saying how sportsbooks could get hurt if they win it all. But what really draws me to the Dodgers are the pitchers. While I enjoy the game of baseball and its late season drama, I find baseball as a sport to be quite boring. Truly dominant pitchers, however, I do find to be a joy to watch. So while a lot of the attention has been on rookie phenom Yasiel Puig (although he did cool off considerably from his hot start), I'm focused on seeing Clayton Kershaw cementing himself as the best lefty of this generation (and possibly best pitcher overall).
So while I'm still not sure how many playoff games I'll watch, I do expect to catch all of the LAD vs ATL NLDS, with such star pitchers as Kershaw, Greinke, and Kimbrel (he's amazing) along with up and comers Medlen and Ryu. I just wish Hudson was pitching too. I always thought he was underrated despite being one of the most consistent top starters of his generation.