The MLB playoffs 2010 are no different than the regular season. Thus far, the MLB playoffs 2010 have shown the most dominant pitching performances yet in the “Year of the Pitcher.” When the year started, it seemed that there was a no-hitter, perfect game, or a close call for both every few weeks. However, with October approaching, the best aces of the game approached their biggest tests – with some having never faced October before. Yet, thus far, the playoffs have been so dominant for pitchers that even the second no-hitter in postseason history isn’t standing alone.
After Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee blew by their opponents on Wednesday, a few more stars took the mound yesterday. For the Rangers, although Lee is their new ace and proven October hero, C.J. Wilson forms the other half of their 1-2 combo. Wilson nearly topped Lee by giving up just two hits and no runs in nearly seven innings, as the Rangers blew the Rays out again.
The MLB playoffs have been so filled with pitching power, the Yankees look mediocre by comparison. Andy Pettitte didn’t blow the Twins away, just like C.C. Sabathia didn’t on Wednesday. However, the Yankees’ clutch hitting propelled them to another win, and puts them in line to face the Rangers in the ALCS.
Yet for all the big name pitchers in the American League, the National League hurlers have made the biggest statements. Like Halladay before him, Tim Lincecum answered all doubters in his postseason debut. Although Lincecum didn’t no-hit the Braves, he held them to just one more hit after a leadoff double, and piled up 14 strikeouts.
It is a bizarro world when the second no-hitter in playoff history isn’t the most dominating October performance by far. But Lincecum’s two-hit shutout gave Halladay some company, and now both aces can let their powerful supporting cast finish off the opposition.
Although the playoffs this year have already shown off dominant pitchers, there are still a few more ahead. Roy Oswalt and Matt Cain will try to follow Halladay and Lincecum, and both are capable of matching them. If they do, then the Phillies and Giants will have decisive leads, just like the Rangers and Yankees do.
If these leads hold, then the LCS’s would have dream showdowns on the mound. A Rangers-Yankees Game 1 could have Lee and Sabathia square off, as they did in Game 1 of the 2009 World Series. Meanwhile, Halladay and Lincecum stand to clash in Game 1 of the NLCS, with the other Phillies and Giants aces set to duel afterward.
Unless the hitters wake up, the playoffs could be all about the hurlers – although the hitters have had months to wake up this year with no success. Today, Oswalt, Cain, Tommy Hanson and Bronson Arroyo will have their turns to set the bar even higher.
Bleacher Report- “2010 MLB Playoffs: Is CC Sabathia The Worst Postseason Ace?”