D-Backs Advance To NLCS, Will Face Dodgers.

Written by Jorge L. Ortiz at USA Today.com

 Breaking down the National League wild card game between the Arizona Diamondbacks and Colorado Rockies at Chase Field:

Diamondbacks 11, Rockies 8: The Diamondbacks advance to the NL Division Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Game 1 is Friday night at Dodger Stadium.

The game: Paul Goldschmidt’s three-run homer off Jon Gray set the tone, putting the Diamondbacks ahead 3-0 a mere eight pitches into the bottom of the first, but they needed plenty more help to fend off the hard-charging Rockies.

That included the first relief appearance since 2014 by left-hander Robbie Ray, who went 15-5 in 28 starts during the season. Ray took over in the fourth and gave up a run in 2 1/3 innings, throwing 34 pitches and getting credit for the win.

But his was hardly the most memorable performance by a pitcher in the game. That honor belongs to reliever Archie Bradley, and it was as a hitter. Bradley’s two-run triple in the seventh – on his fifth plate appearance of the season – put Arizona ahead 8-5.

Of course, then he would serve up two home runs in the eighth to allow the Rockies to narrow the gap in the wild and entertaining game. A.J. Pollock finally salted it away for the Diamondbacks with their fourth triple of the game, a two-run drive to right-center off Greg Holland to extend the lead to 10-7. Jeff Mathis followed with an RBI bunt single to cap the three-run eighth

Arizona leadoff man David Peralta and second-place hitter Ketel Marte combined for six hits, with Marte becoming the first player to hit two triples in a postseason game since the Philadelphia Phillies’ Mariano Duncan in 1993.

Daniel Descalso’s two-run homer off Tyler Anderson in the third inning stretched the Diamondbacks’ lead to 6-0 and the rout was on, or so it seemed.

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Yankee Vs Twins Wildcard Preview

Written by Joel Sherman at New York Post.com

There were four terrific teams in the American League this year, but five playoff teams.

The Red Sox, Yankees, Indians and Astros each won at least 91 games and all outscored their opponents by at least 117 runs. The Twins are the gatecrashers here.

Of the 58 teams that have qualified as wild cards since the format was installed in 1995, none has had a lower winning percentage than the 2017 Twins’ .525 — and that includes the last six seasons, when two wild cards have reached in both leagues.

These Twins outscored opponents by 27 runs, but were 12-26 against the other four AL playoff teams, outscored in those 38 contests by 104 runs.

One of these AL playoff clubs is not like the other.

There were just five AL teams above .500 and Minnesota is one almost because some team had to be the best of the worst. The Twins could be offended by such a statement, except even their front office didn’t believe in the team, trading closer Brandon Kintzler at the July deadline and also Jaime Garcia to the Yankees.

If the Yankees and Twins played 100 times, my suspicion is the Yanks would win at least 65. But they are going to play just once on Tuesday night, and let’s face it: You wouldn’t want me to tell you that you had a 35 percent chance of getting hit by lightning tomorrow. But that is the situation the Yankees are in. A bad three hours, and the Yankees’ season is over.

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