With the Rays winning on Saturday, and the Yankees winning one of two during their double-header, the Twins are now locked into the number two seed for the post-season. We know that teams from the same division can't play each other in the divisional series, which means the Twins get the Wild Card. Right now it's looking like the Twins are likely to host New York for the ALDS, but here are the results of the four scenarios that could play out today:
Rays defeat Royals, Yankees defeat Red Sox: Twins host Yankees
Rays defeat Royals, Red Sox defeat Yankees: Twins host Yankees
Royals defeat Rays, Red Sox defeat Yankees: Twins host Yankees
Royals defeat Rays, Yankees defeat Red Sox: Twins host Rays
So for those of you hoping to see the Rays run wild on Twins pitching, you know what you have to cheer for. Personally, I want the Bombers. How amazing would it be to take the ALDS from them by winning game three in New York?
On Wednesday, when the playoffs start, there are three starting times: 12:30, 4:00 and 7:30, all times central. If the Twins end up with the Yanks, no doubt they'll get prime time since New York is bound to end up with the 7:30 start time no matter who they play. With the National League game getting the 4pm slot, on the off chance that the Twins host the Rays they'll get the early game.
Twins Playoff Rosters
Rotation (4): Francisco Liriano, Carl Pavano, Brian Duensing, Nick Blackburn
Bullpen (7): Matt Capps, Brian Fuentes, Matt Guerrier, Jesse Crain, Jose Mijares, Jon Rauch (if healthy)
Starting Lineup (9): Denard Span, Orlando Hudson, Joe Mauer, Michael Cuddyer, Jim Thome, Delmon Young, Jason Kubel, Danny Valencia, J.J. Hardy
Bench (5): Drew Butera, Jason Repko, Alexi Casilla, Nick Punto
For that last spot in the bullpen, we're still looking at Scott Baker and Kevin Slowey. If Rauch is unable to go after his bullpen session tomorrow or Tuesday, we'd either see A) both Baker and Slowey, or B) one of those two along with Glen Perkins.
With the final bench spot, Gardy has said he's focusing on speed and defensive replacements over pinch hitters (seriously, who are you going to pinch hit for in that lineup, even without Justin Morneau?), which means guys like Matt Tolbert and Trevor Plouffe are more likely than Jose Morales. Gardy could even go with the unexpected and chose Ben Revere, although that seems unlikely.