Despite a fantastic run through September, unseating the Boston Red Sox from their seemingly safe AL Wild Card perch, the Tampa Bay Rays were unable to survive the defending AL Champion Texas Rangers.
Matt Moore pitched like a wizard in Game 1 of the series, going 7 shutout innings and leading the Rays to a 9-0 victory. Since then, Tampa starters allowed 13 runs over 16 innings. The offense wasn't particularly potent outside of Game 1 either, scoring 12 runs over the next 3 games. The Rays drop the series, 3-1.
Meanwhile, in the NL, the Cardinals dropped a tight match to the Phillies, who rode 6 shutout innings from Cole Hamels and survived some shaky bullpen work. Jimmy Rollins is turning in an uncharacteristically strong postseason, turning in a 1.449 OPS thus far in October of 2011, far out of character from his ~.600 career postseason OPS. Philly leads 2-1.
Back in the AL, the Yankees committed hate crimes on the Tigers' pitching staff. Relatively competent work from Rick Porcello gave the Tigers a chance to stay in the game, but apart from a lone run off of the bat of Victor Martinez, Yankees pitching was surprisingly impenetrable. Yankees even the series at 2.
Finally, Arizona, down 0-2, struck back in a very real way. Josh Collmenter pitched like the Diamondbacks' Cinderella season was on the line - which it was. 7 innings of 2-hit, 1-run ball held the Brewers' bats still, keeping the Snakes' hopes alive for another day. Shawn Marcum was shelled, allowing 7 runs on 7 hits before the end of the 5th inning. Final, 8-1. Milwaukee leads 2-1.