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Elimination Tuesday? The Athletics and Giants have their backs up against the wall

Oct 9, 2012, 10:30 AM EDT

Division Series - Cincinnati Reds v San Francisco Giants - Game Two Getty Images

Today marks the first day when a team could be eliminated from the division series. The Athletics and the Giants are both in action and both face 0-2 deficits. It’s do or die time, Bay Area baseball fans.

The Giants find themselves in Ohio of all places, facing a pitcher who tossed a no-hitter 11 days ago.  Opposing Homer Bailey is Ryan Vogelsong. Vogelsong made two starts against the Reds this year, allowing six runs in thirteen innings. Bailey started once against the Giants, allowing three runs — two earned — in six and a third. Bailey, it should also be noted, is way worse at home this season than he is on the road.  And the Reds, it should be noted, haven’t won a home playoff game since 1995.  They need to win one of the next three to advance.

Meanwhile in Oakland, Brett Anderson squares off against Anibal Sanchez and the Tigers. All of the talk for the past two days has been about Al Alburquerque sealing a 1-3 putout with a kiss, but the A’s need to get over that in a hurry and focus on saving their playoff lives. The last time Anderson saw the Tigers — or any game action at all — was on September 19. That day he tweaked his oblique and left the game after giving up three earned runs in two and a third. Sanchez had no better luck against the A’s. He faced them back on September 20 and was tagged for five earned runs in five and two-thirds. Also worth noting that (a) the last time the A’s played in any playoff series at all, they were swept by the Tigers, back in 2006; and (b) the A’s have found themselves down 0-2 in seven previous playoff series, and ended up getting swept in six of the seven.

It’s pins and needles time for A’s and Giants fans. For the rest of us: the thrill of win-or-go-home baseball.  The Giants play the Reds at 5:37 PM Eastern.  The Tigers and A’s go off at 9:37 PM Eastern.

  1. stex52 - Oct 9, 2012 at 10:49 AM

    Gotta root for Oakland. My younger sister in California has tickets for tomorrow.

    C’mon A’s! Win one for Sarah!

  2. uuddlrlrbastart - Oct 9, 2012 at 11:00 AM

    If I was a Tigers fan I’d be far more annoyed about the 9:30 start time than a Nats fan about the 1:00 start time tomorrow.

    • APBA Guy - Oct 9, 2012 at 11:36 AM

      9:30 ET is 6:30 local time, which is perfectly reasonable.

      • uuddlrlrbastart - Oct 9, 2012 at 11:46 AM

        Not for Tigers fans…

    • aiede - Oct 9, 2012 at 11:54 AM

      I’ll still take the occasional 9:30 pm start for baseball over the constant stream of late-night starts once the NHL playoffs roll around and the Red Wings deal with the ridiculousness of being in the Western Conference.

      At least we get to watch the game, which isn’t true for Nats fans without TV or streaming options in their workplaces.

    • bayarea510 - Oct 9, 2012 at 2:00 PM

      Yea well, I live in California and I was annoyed that I had to get up before 9:00am on a Sunday to watch the A’s play. Deal with it.

      • pharmy - Oct 9, 2012 at 4:10 PM

        Before 9 on a Sunday? How did you survive?

  3. Francisco (FC) - Oct 9, 2012 at 11:03 AM

    While I have no horse in this race I think I would prefer the A’s to win today, it means more baseball games to watch…

  4. moogro - Oct 9, 2012 at 11:28 AM

    Ryan Vogelsong short leash. Freak at the the ready.

  5. APBA Guy - Oct 9, 2012 at 11:38 AM

    A lot of cliches come to mind when thinking about the beloved A’s on the brink of elimination, but my overall feeling is that losing 3-0 after such a great regular season would just be wrong.

    Let’s Go Oakland!

    • scatterbrian - Oct 9, 2012 at 12:45 PM

      They need to mix in at least one walk-off win in this series.

  6. temporarilyexiled - Oct 9, 2012 at 11:39 AM

    Dear Giants,

    Please don’t win today unless you’re going to every law of the universe and win all three road games.

    Have mercy.

  7. tomnickle - Oct 9, 2012 at 12:06 PM

    If Bud Selig were at all interested in giving every team a fair shake the Reds v. Giants game would have started at 1pm today. Making it an 11am start for the Giants.

    The Reds had to play two games in San Francisco at 11:30 pm Central time.

    • crookedstick - Oct 9, 2012 at 1:30 PM

      The Reds’ two games in SF started at 8:37pm Central (9:37pm Eastern or Cincinnati time). Not great, but not nearly as heinous as you point out. A regular season night game on the West Coast starts at 10pm Cincinnati time. Not a big deal for the players. The fans (as usual) are the ones screwed. At least they were on Saturday and Sunday (which the next day was a holiday for a lot of people).

      • tomnickle - Oct 9, 2012 at 2:25 PM

        In what way is Central time behind Pacific time?

        9:30pm Pacific time is 11:30 pm Central time. Time to go back to school slugger.

  8. scatterbrian - Oct 9, 2012 at 12:57 PM

    The Albuquerque kiss nonsense is really being overblown. Cespedes said he didn’t like it–which is a perfectly reasonable thing to say–and suddenly the A’s are whiners who need to let it go and focus on winning.

    In an interview with Jonny Gomes, he said it didn’t bother him and that the baseball gods take care of that kind of thing.

    Gomes is a leader on this team, Cespedes is a rookie. I think the A’s have moved on.

  9. gogigantos - Oct 9, 2012 at 4:02 PM

    All in favor of more baseball, and still rooting for an A’ Giants thing. Maybe not, but still, more ball is good.

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