Congrats to the Oakland A's, and get ready for Moneyball 2
The Rangers led the division for 178 days, but managed to choke it away in the final weeks of the season and let the Athletics move into the Divisional Round without a 1-game playoff.
The A's won today's clincher 12-5, thanks to hits from 8 different players, and 6+ innings of scoreless relief after starter AJ Griffin got roughed up for 5 runs in 2.2 innings.
Josh Hamilton made a key error in the 4th inning, losing a routine fly ball that could have ended the inning, but instead allowed the go-ahead runs to score. The A's never looked back, and they'll move on to play the winner of a 1-game Wild Card playoff between the Rangers and either the Yankees or Orioles.
Congrats to the A's, who have the lowest payroll and weren't considered legitimate playoff contenders by anyone at the beginning of the season.
Could we see a sequal to Moneyball? It wouldn't be surprising, because this year's team might be an even better story.
Their roster is made up of outcasts from other teams, including 4 former Red Sox players. The Red Sox probably could have used those guys, since they were mathematically eliminated a long time ago.