Twins Headed for Another First-Round Exit

Minnesota Twins manager Ron Gardenhire argues a called ball with home plate umpire Hunter Wendelstedt during the seventh inning of Game 2 of their MLB American League Divison Series baseball playoffs against the New York Yankees in Minneapolis, Minnesota, October 7, 2010. Gardenhire was ejected from the game. REUTERS/Andy King (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before — the Minnesota Twins lost a playoff game to the New York Yankees.  Minnesota’s loss was the 8th straight postseason defeat at the hands of the Yankees, and their 11th straight playoff loss overall.  Even though I don’t have a real rooting interest in the series, I have to imagine it’s frustrating to be a Twins fan in October lately. 

The Twins’ recent playoff struggles caused Matt Lindner, ESPN.com contributor and fellow Bloguin-er at Ground Rule Triple, to ask if the Twins hold the record for most first-round exits since the inception of the Wildcard.  I was interested to find out myself, so I used baseball-reference’s postseason page to keep a tally.  You may be surprised who tops the list, and no, it’s not the Twins.

(Read More)

First Round Exits Since Wildcard Started (1995-2009)
NYY – 6
ATL – 5
MIN – 4
BOS – 4
LAD – 4
OAK – 4
HOU – 4
LAA – 3
CHC – 3
SDP – 3
SFG – 3
CLE – 3
TEX – 3
STL – 2
COL – 2
CHW – 2
ARI – 2
MIL – 1
PHI – 1
SEA – 1

I was initially surprised that the Yankees currently top the list when it comes to first-round exits, but it makes sense — they’ve been in the playoffs virtually every year since the LDS was created, so they’ve had more chances than anyone to lose in the first round.  The same could be said for the Braves, currently #2 on the list, with their record streak of NL East titles that was ended just a few years ago.

The list speaks to the randomness of the LDS — in a five game series, you won’t always get the best teams advancing.  It remains a crapshoot, and if you want proof of that this year, just take a look at that Rangers/Rays series.

Quantcast