So far, the baseball adage that pitching wins games has certainly held true in the championship series. Lincecum, Oswalt and Lee in particular have been phenomenal. Let's take a closer look at the games!
In the American League...
After a stunning comeback by the Yankees in Game 1, overcoming a 5-run deficit to score six runs in the 7th and 8th innings, the Rangers said enough was enough. They outscored the Yankees 7 to 2 in Game 2, splitting the series 1-1 to head into a much anticipated match up between Andy Pettitte and Cliff Lee for Game 3 of the ALCS. Veteran and ace postseason pitcher Pettitte pitched seven full innings, holding the Rangers to two runs, but the Yankees lineup was unable to produce against the unrelenting Lee.
Cliff Lee has not lost a game in the postseason yet, and he proved every bit worth the hype in Game 3 of the ALCS, striking out thirteen batters in eight innings and holding the deep Yankees lineup to just two hits by switching up his pitches but ultimately throwing an unhittable cutter. The Rangers backed up Lee's terrific pitching performance by scoring extra runs in the 9th to create enough padding for him to retire for the last inning.
The Rangers have thus far taken a win at home and one on the road. Nicknamed the "road warriors" of the postseason after they won all three games on the road in the ALDS, the Rangers are confident and revved to continue their winning streak. They do know, however, never to be comfortable in a series against the Yankees, who have shown time and time again that they can dominate in the postseason. Let's see how these games have affected ticket prices on the secondary market for the ALCS:
After two enormous wins by the Rangers in Game 2 and Game 3, Yankees fans are now paying a little less per ticket for Games 4 and 5 in New York, prices dropping from $218.39 and $229.36 to $208.45 and $210.01 for the two games, respectively. On the other hand, prices have begun to climb for the remaining games in Arlington, as Rangers fans are eager to see their team bring the series to a close at home. Prices for Game 6 have jumped from $161.65 to $195.01, while prices for Game 7 have seen a similar increase from $185.23 to $206.03. We'll be sure to keep an eye out for how prices continue to move, especially if the Yankees can even out the series tonight with unpredictable AJ Burnett on the mound.
In the National League...
Pitching sure has been exciting! On Saturday, Lincecum vs. Halladay was possibly one of the biggest events in baseball postseason in a long time. Power hitting has defined baseball since the end of the deadball era, but fine pitching performances are not to be overlooked and these two pitchers dominated in the NLDS. Entering Game 1, both the Giants and the Phillies were confident with their aces on the mound, but speculation was abound for how the game would turn out. Neither Lincecum nor Halladay proved unhittable as the pitchers allowed a home run each in the 3rd inning. Moving forward, their performances were comparably solid but Lincecum and the Giants prevailed in Game 1 of the NLCS, edging out Halladay and the Phillies 4-3 for the Game 1 win.
In Game 2 of the series, Oswalt came out with a vengeance to prove that Halladay wasn't the only Phillies ace named Roy. He pitched eight innings, holding the Giants to three hits and just one run while striking out nine. Oswalt was instrumental in the team's 7th inning rally to add insurance runs to the scoreboard. He boldly ran from second to home on a soft single by teammate Polanco, mowing down the third base coach, who had thrown up his arms for Oswalt to stop at third. Oswalt reached safely, contributing to the Phillies big win from both offensive and defensive standpoints.
Now the NLCS is split at 1-1 as the teams head to the West Coast for Games 3 through 5. It will be a showdown of two 26-year-old pitchers this afternoon, Cole Hamels for the Phillies and Matt Cain for the Giants. After the pitching performances by their respective teams in Games 1 and 2, fans will be looking at the pitching in Game 3 even more closely. Let's see how this is being reflected in resold tickets:
Ticket prices for the Giants and Phillies series has been astronomical since the conclusion of the NLDS. After an exciting first two games, Giants fans are shelling out even more money to see the match up now. Prices have jumped from $241.85 to $281.13 for today's game while prices have increase by more than $20 for Games 4 and 5 as well. It is interesting to note, however, that prices have dipped for Games 6 and 7 at home for the Phillies if the series goes that long.
Prices will continue to change as the postseason advances, so come back to the SeatGeek Blog often as our team tracks price movements throughout the championship series and onward!
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