The Yankees are headed to the American League Championship Series for the first time since 2004—when they lost to the Red Sox—and now they are signing the praises of Alex Rodriguez. Manager Joe Girardi said, "Without Alex, we're probably not in this situation right now. We're probably still playing. He had a monster series, monster hits."
The Daily News broke down his stats a little: "In a three-game series sweep in which the Yanks batted just .225 as a team and had a .288 on-base percentage, Rodriguez hit .455 (5-for-11) with two homers and six RBI. He hit two game-tying homers, including a solo shot in Game 3 Sunday night with one out in the seventh inning." He's a "real Yankee" now all right! Of course, Jorge Posada is getting credit for his game-winning home run last night, as were Andy Pettittee, Mariano Rivera and Derek Jeter (the Post's Joel Sherman calls them "The Dynasty Boys").
Also making things sweet was the Anaheim Angels' sweep of the Boston Red Sox. A fan told MLB.com, "I don't know what I'm happier about, the Sox getting swept, or us doing the sweeping [of the Twins]." However, that means the Angels, who have done a good job of confounding the Yankees, are headed to the Bronx on Friday—Johnny Damon said, "There is no quit in the Angels. We see that when we play them."
Still, the NY Times' William Rhoden is hoping for a Yankees-L.A. Dodgers matchup for the World Series: "Baseball needs a World Series for the ages, one that reinforces its roots and, yes, its relative purity. Granted, this is a lot to ask one World Series matchup to accomplish, but baseball needs an authentic fall classic. It needs Yankees-Dodgers, for the good of the game."