Sep 17, 2013; Kansas City, MO, USA; Cleveland Indians center fielder Michael Bourn (24) is congratulated by first baseman Nick Swisher (33) after hitting a home run in the ninth inning against the Kansas City Royals at Kauffman Stadium. The Indians won 5-3. Mandatory Credit: John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports
I’ve been thinking about this American League Wild Card Game matchup for the last couple of days — ever since the Tampa Bay Rays beat the Texas Rangers in a Game 163 to finalize it — but I haven’t yet completely found myself settled on who to root for.
On one hand we have the division-rival Cleveland Indians, who are the worst by the way, and I can’t seem to bring myself to hope for anything good to happen to them. But on the other hand we have an AL East team. The Rays themselves aren’t a super hate-able team — they’re no New York Yankees or Boston Red Sox — but we have to hear all the time about how simply great that division is. And, I mean, yeah it’s the best division in baseball and all that, but the AL Central was pretty decent too and I feel like the Tigers would be sort of somehow validated (in fan logic) if two teams from the Central made it to the playoffs* (kind of like rooting for the Big Ten during Bowl Season).
*Like the real playoffs which are decided by series and everything.
I think in the end I’ll be rooting for the Rays because even if I were to subscribe to the whole “pulling for the division to do well” thing, I’d probably slip back into old habits because rooting against the Indians just feels so much like home.
But I’m more interested to find out what other Tigers fans think. Fill out the poll below to indicate who you’ll be rooting for, and perhaps leave a comment to explain your reasoning.
Game time: 8:07 PM ET
TV coverage: TBS
Venue: Progressive Field, Cleveland, OH