Well, 2 out of 4 ain't bad. I got the NLCS on the nose, but missed the ALCS by a pretty penny. My Red Sox guess went horribly awry, and my guess that the Yankees would win in 4 didn't exactly come to pass. I called the Yankees rough favorites to win tonight, and when I saw Bartolo Colon go down in the 2nd inning, I officially pronounced the Angels dead. I was wrong.
Ervin Santana is being anointed some sort of hero, although he pitched 5.1 IP and allowed 3 runs. It's not bad, but slow down, hoss, he ain't Cy Young. The biggest story was that the Angels got to Mussina (poor Mike has been inconsistent lately). Randy Johnson pitched 4.1 scoreless innings -- a fact that should be given full attention. If I see the Yankees down by 2 or 3 runs with a few innings left, and Randy Johnson comes in? I predict Johnson holds them scoreless and the Yanks score some runs.
But scoring runs was exactly what the Yankees did not do. This was the story of the ALDS; their hitting line was 351/392/253. So while they did an admirable (and predictable) job of getting runners on base, they were terrible at getting them in. The Yankees hit 4 HR in 5 games. The Angels hit 6. If you had told me going in that the Angels would out-homer the Yankees, I would have laughed in your face. But that's exactly what happened; the Angels were able to hit, and the Yankees were not.
The Yankees' team ERA in the ALDS was 4.40. Their regular season ERA was 4.53. Considering they were throwing their best pitchers out there (for the most part), the Yankees pitched exactly like they did during the regular season. The exception here is that they did not hit like they did during the regular season. This is possibly due to their own ineptitude, although the excellent Angel pitching deserves its share of the credit. They held the Yankees to a 3.89 team ERA, and despite allowing a truly obscene 24 walks (the Yankee staff allowed 5), they only allowed 4 HR. As I've said, the Yankees did a fine job getting on base, but the Angels shut down their power game almost completely.
And now for the LCS ...