Rangers Prepared for First World Series After Moving Through Tough AL Playoffs
It didn't take long for the excuses to start flying out of the Big Apple after the Rangers dispatched the defending champions with another dominating performance by a starter and some more thunder from the middle of the order.
"The Yankees could have come back if Mark Teixiera hadn't got hurt."
"C.C. Sabathia and Phil Hughes were rusty in games one and two."
Stop it New York, you're embarrassing yourselves.
The Rangers are going to their first World Series because they flat out beat down the two "best teams in the American League."
No one outside of the Dallas/Ft. Worth Metroplex gave the Rangers the slightest chance of advancing to the World Series, most didn't think they would beat the Rays in the Division Series.
But they did.
After eliminating the Rays in five the attention turned to the ALCS with most pundits in full agreement.
There was no way the Rangers could beat the Yankees with Cliff Lee on standby until game three of the series.
The thought being the Rangers needed to get three starts out of Lee to get it done prompting a writer for ESPN New York to post a moronic article titled "Texas Toast."
This is of course the same ESPN personality who defiantly shouted the Yankees would win the AL Pennant in easy fashion both after the Rangers traded for Lee and going into the ALCS.
His reasoning was as simple as it was idiotic stating the Rangers didn't have any pitching after Lee.
I wonder if he enjoyed his introductions to C.J. Wilson, Colby Lewis, Derek Holland and Neftali Feliz.
Looking back at how the Rangers won the series in dominating fashion you will find a Rangers starter that won both of his starts, but it wasn't Lee or Wilson.
It was the castoff starter Colby Lewis who the Rangers had signed out of Japan before spring training; a move I criticized at the time and am now very much enjoying my huge plate of crow.
The Rangers are going to the World Series because their supporting cast behind the ace in the rotation is simply better than the beasts from the East and they proved it in the playoffs.
CJ Wilson outpitched C.C. Sabathia in game one.
Colby Lewis outpitched Phil Hughes in games two and six.
Derek Holland and the Rangers bullpen outpiched A.J. Burnett in game four; well that one wasn't much of a shock, even to Yankee fans.
The Rangers said repeatedly on the way to New York they wouldn't be intimidated by Yankee Stadium or the infamous ghosts that have caused some very good teams to bow down to the pinstripes.
Not only did they play fearless baseball, but they beat down the defending champions in their own ballpark giving the Yankee faithful a taste of Bronx bombing they're not used to seeing.
The Rangers are full of confidence now heading into their World Series match-up with the San Francisco Giants in large part because of their road to the Fall Classic.
The Rays and the Yankees were both very good teams and the Rangers had to take their game to another level to win the American League Pennant, a playoff gear that a team must have if it hopes to advance to baseball's biggest stage.
After a grueling division series and a dominating ALCS, the Rangers have certainly paid their dues and will be ready for the Giants.
As their manager, Ron Washington, said before game six: The game isn't going to give them something they can't handle because they've already done everything the game will give them.
More often than not it's the road a team takes to the championship round in any sport that determines how they'll play.
The Rangers took a tough road up the American League East mountain to make it to the World Series and the experience should help them as they try and continue to give the fans in Arlington another first in franchise history.
A World Series championship.