Although the Astros were eliminated last night, the postseason still marches on. The Rays currently await the winner of the NLCS, which is scheduled for a Game 7 of its own later tonight between the Braves and Dodgers. Lots of drama still to unfold. In fact, 54 percent of fans who voted are pulling for the Rays in the World Series.
Can’t say that I blame the voters as the Rays were one of the best teams in baseball this year. For the Astros, however, there was really not a lot of support outside of the city of Houston.
Honestly, the results of the above poll were hardly a surprise. The Astros will be the most disliked team in baseball for a while. It is what it is.
An interesting aspect of the postseason up to this point was the removal of off days during a series. For example, the Astros and Rays played seven games in seven days. This new wrinkle in the scheduling, thanks to the pandemic and, I assume, television broadcast demands, forced teams to adjust how to use their pitching staff compared to recent seasons. Instead of heavily leaning on six to eight pitchers in a series, teams had to utilize more of their staff. Sometimes the drop off is steep from your best six pitchers to your seventh. Fewer off days means less time for rest. Last year’s champions, the Nationals, used those off days to their advantage as they advanced to the World Series. The Astros, who had to use a plethora of rookies in 2020, weren’t afforded that same luxury. 64 percent of fans, though, felt as if the no off day situation in a playoff series is fair.
On one hand, it does level the playing field. On the other, it does put teams with lesser depth at a greater disadvantage. The Astros were one of those teams. And that’s perfectly fair as they’re responsible for the pitchers on the staff. If the depth is an issue, so be it.
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