For the second consecutive year, the Texas Rangers are in the ALCS. For the first time, though, the Rangers will be facing an opponent other than the Tampa Bay Rays or New York Yankees, as the Detroit Tigers travel to Arlington to take on the Rangers.
The Rangers will be looking for their second consecutive pennant, which was last done by the Philadelphia Phillies in 2008 and 2009, with the Phillies winning the World Series in 2008 over the Rays before losing to the Yankees in 2009. The feat hasn't been done in the American League since 2001, when the Yankees won their fourth straight pennant.
Detroit, meanwhile, will be looking for their 11th pennant in franchise history, with their most recent coming in 2006 when the Tigers fell to the St. Louis Cardinals in five games.
Ron Washington's club will certainly be the more rested team, though that can sometimes serve as a detriment in the playoffs. Texas eliminated Tampa Bay on Tuesday, needing just four games to end the ALDS. C.J. Wilson will start Game 1 for the Rangers when the ALCS kicks off Saturday, over a week after his last start.
By contrast, the Tigers will have had just one off day between the end of the ALDS and the start of the ALCS, as Game 5 between the Yankees and Tigers was held on Thursday. Justin Verlander, who started Game 3 on Monday against the Yankees, will be on normal rest for Game 1 of the ALCS.
Games 1 and 2 are scheduled to be held on Saturday and Sunday in Arlington, with the times to be announced.