MLB Playoffs: These LDS Game 5's Have Resulted in an Exciting Opening Week

Erick FernandezCorrespondent IIOctober 7, 2011

ST LOUIS, MO - OCTOBER 05:  (R-L) Albert Pujols #5 hugs Daniel Descalso #33 of the St. Louis Cardinals after the Cardinals 5-3 victory against the Philadelphia Phillies in Game Four of the National League Division Series at Busch Stadium on October 5, 2011 in St Louis, Missouri.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Yesterday, the Detroit Tigers upset the favored New York Yankees with an exciting 3-2 victory in Game 5 of the American League Division Series, and they will be facing the Texas Rangers in the American League Championship Series tomorrow night.

Although the Tigers' pitching rotation, led by Justin Verlander, was more consistent and superior to the Yankees' staff, they were still considered an underdog because of all of the bats in the Yankees lineup.

The Yankees led the Major Leagues with 222 home runs this year and were at the top of nearly every offensive category. Their offensive prowess often made up for their inabilities and inconsistencies in their pitching rotation.

Tonight there will be two more finales that could offer more surprises to an already wacky end of September and post-season.


Arizona Diamondbacks at Milwaukee Brewers

The first Game 5 tonight will provide a matchup between the Milwaukee Brewers and the resurgent Arizona Diamondbacks. Five days ago many had already written off the Diamondbacks after going down 2-0 in the series.

This isn't new for a team that was given no chance to beat the defending champion San Francisco Giants for the National League West crown.

Now the Diamondbacks are trying to overcome odds once again and beat the Brewers—one of the best teams in the majors for the majority of the season—in three straight games. 

The D-backs have the advantage tonight as they send their 21-game winner, Ian Kennedy, against the Brewers' Yavani Gallardo.

Kennedy will need to stop Prince Fielder and Ryan Braun if they want to head to their first NLCS since 2007.


St. Louis Cardinals at Philadelphia Phillies

This Game 5 matchup will have two of the best pitchers in the Majors dueling each other for their teams' playoff lives.

The St. Louis Cardinals' Chris Carpenter will face the Phillies' ace Roy Halladay.

The Cardinals and the Phillies have been going blow-for-blow so far in the first four games. The Phillies won Games 1 and 3, and the Cardinals won Game 2 and survived elimination by winning Game 4 against Roy Oswalt.

The Phillies, who have been the best team in the National League, if not the majors, with their 102-60 record, will be extremely disappointed if their season were to end tonight. There are no two ways around it. If the Phillies don't win the World Series, with that starting rotation, their season will be considered a failure.

Although the Phillies will be the favorite heading into the game, the Cardinals might like it more that way. St. Louis, down 8.5 games to the Braves in the wild card race on Sept. 1, were able to make a miraculous comeback and overtake the Braves on the final day of the season. 

If the Cards can beat the heavily favored Phils they will pull off one of the greatest upsets in LDS history. A victory would drastically shake up the projected playoff picture.

No matter what happens tonight,  MLB will be treating us to two big games.