Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Justin Verlander delivers a pitch in the eighth inning of Game 5 of an American League division baseball series against the Oakland Athletics.
If you're a Texas Rangers fan, there's a chance you've already checked out of the MLB playoffs. If you're an MLB fan whose favorite team happens to be the Rangers, you're frantically trying to find some kind of rooting interest in the League Championships Series, and you're having a pretty hard time.
In the American League, there's the Detroit Tigers, who fought their way to a 3-0 series lead on Tuesday night behind yet another magnificent start from Justin Verlander. The Rangers had some heated games against the Tigers this season and beat them in the ALCS last season in six games. It's hard to hate Verlander, and the same goes for Miguel Cabrera and Prince Fielder, not to mention Denton's own Austin Jackson. Guys that are impossible not to hate include embattled closer Jose Valverde. Of course, they're playing the Yankees, who they'll try to eliminate tonight when Max Scherzer and his multi-colored eyes take on CC Sabathia. The only guys on the Yankees that are hard to hate are Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera, and they're both out for the season with injuries.
Over in the National League is where things get really tricky. The San Francisco Giants and St. Louis Cardinals are locked up at 1-1 with Game 3 set for tonight. Of course, they're the two teams that have beaten the Rangers in the World Series the past two seasons — the Giants in 2010 (5 games) and the Cardinals in 2011 (7 games).
The Giants were flat-out better than the Rangers that year while the Cardinals seemed to eek their way into a title against a superior team. That makes it more hard to stomach, so you've gotta go with the Giants there.
That leaves the Giants and the Tigers in the World Series, and it leaves the Tigers as the unquestioned winner in the battle to see who Rangers fans will root for. Enjoy.