2013 Wild Card
Reds 5 Pirates 3
It is easy to write of the Reds after they limped home in the final week of the season, losing their last five games, including a three game sweep at the hands of the Pirates at Great American Ballpark. Going on the road may actually help the Reds, who clearly appeared to be pressing as they tried to get home field for the Wild Card Game against the Pirates. The Reds have been in the playoffs two of the last three seasons, while the Pirates are postseason neophytes. The Pirates will have their ace Francisco Liriano on the mound, who compiled an 8-1 record at PNC Park this year. However, he struggled in September, winning just one game, and lost three decisions during the season to the Reds. Johnny Cueto who missed most of the season, gets the start for Cincinnati and was 1-0 against the Pirates this season. The Reds experience will payoff as the end the Pirates dream of a miracle run.
Rays 6 Indians 1
The Cleveland Indians did what they had to do to make the playoffs, and that was taking advantage of a very easy schedule down the stretch of the season. The Rays have already played a one game do or die playoff game, beating the Texas Rangers just to make it to Cleveland. The Indians now face a winning team and it will be clear early that the money is on the line. The Rays won four of six games during the season against the Tribe, and Wednesday’s Wild Card starter Alex Cobb went seven innings and did not allow a run in a win against the Indians in the regular season. The Tribe meanwhile are rolling the dice a bit and starting Rookie Danny Salazar. The Rays have already beaten a young pitcher and now will do it again as they move on to face the Red Sox in the Division Series, as the Rays have the clear talent edge.