MLB Spring Training 2013 Schedule: When to Watch Last Season's Playoff Rematches
Major League Baseball's 2012 postseason led to some incredibly exciting October baseball and this year's spring training will give us a chance to see some rematches from those series.
The St. Louis Cardinals and Washington Nationals one-upped each other in the comeback department en route to a memorable National League Division Series.
The San Francisco Giants started their improbable World Series-winning run by staging a comeback of their own against the Cincinnati Reds to make history in the other National League Division Series.
In the American League Championship Series, the New York Yankees and Detroit Tigers didn't provide as much offense as expected, but there were still some great moments to point to for both sides.
Let's take a look back at each of these playoff series from last season and when you can catch the rematches during spring training.
The full 2013 spring training schedule can be found on MLB.com.
St. Louis Cardinals vs. Washington Nationals: Friday, Mar. 8, at 1:05 p.m. ET
The Cardinals and Nationals met in what was an epic NLCS that ended with St. Louis emerging victorious over Washington, three games to two.
St. Louis had Washington on the brink of elimination after the first three games, but the Nationals showed some heart by pushing the series to a fifth game. However, it was in that Game 5 that the Cards proved they had slightly more heart than their opponent.
Trailing 6-0 at one point, the Cards made an incredible comeback to make it 7-5 going into the ninth inning. It was then that St. Louis was down to their final strike twice while still down by two runs, but were able to claw its way back to tie the game and eventually take a two-run lead going into the bottom of the inning.
Jason Motte would take the mound for his second inning and ultimately close out the series.
The never say die attitude of both of these squads was quite impressive during the 2012 postseason and that made for one of the more exciting series. Granted, spring training baseball won't allow for that type of excitement, but it'll still be interesting to see these two squads match up and put some of their best players on the field.
San Francisco Giants vs. Cincinnati Reds: Wednesday, Mar. 13, at 4:05 p.m. ET
If you think the Giants had an easy road to the World Series, think again. Not only did they make a historic comeback against the Reds in the NLDS, but they also had to recover from a 3-1 deficit against the Cardinals to get to the World Series.
If you look up the definition of heart, it's likely you'll see a picture of the 2012 Giants next to it. After losing the first two games of the NLDS at home, the Giants were faced with the impossible task of winning three consecutive road games in order to advance.
Incredibly enough, San Fran did just that in its series with Cincinnati. In Game 5, the Giants jumped out to a 6-0 lead over the Reds after a big fifth inning at the dish, and it was a lead they would never relinquish.
The road comeback was the first of its kind in MLB history. No team had ever lost the first two games of the LDS at home and went on to win the final three on the road.
I'm sure the Reds are not happy about the Giants making them a trivia question answer and their first chance to get some payback will be during spring training, although anything short of a playoff series victory over San Francisco at this point will still leave Cincy falling very short.
New York Yankees vs. Detroit Tigers: Saturday, Mar. 23, at 1:05 p.m. ET
The ALCS was a major disappointment last season after the Yanks' bats didn't show up a lick in this series. The Tigers went on to sweep the series, 4-0.
After scoring four runs in Game 1, New York would score just two more runs the rest of the way in total. The Bronx Bombers weren't bombing anything and made the Tigers pitching staff look like they cloned Sandy Koufax four times.
In fact, the Yanks were eliminated by Max Scherzer, who took a no-hitter into the sixth inning of Game 4 in what was a sensational performance to close out the series.
The series wasn't without a little excitement, however. Game 1 of the ALCS saw the Yanks climb back from a four-run deficit in the bottom of the ninth that was capped off in a heroic fashion by a Raul Ibanez two-run bomb.
That was the lone highlight for New York in this series and Detroit brushed it off without incident to go on and win the American League without so much as a whimper from the Yankees.
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