For the first time in Washington Senators/Texas Rangers history, a postseason series have been won. If they win another series this year. they will reach their first World Series in franchise history. The primary obstacle? The Champions of the World Series of 2009, the New York Yankees.
Joe Girardi's squad is fighting to raise Girardi's number again, this time from 28 to 29, as motivation towards their next goal. Given the Yankees track record, it is easily shown that Texas has a rough road to their first World Series, but they have the man who has faced the Yankees before in the Postseason--the World Series, even-- and beaten them twice. That man is Cliff Lee. In addition, the Yankees' once-formidable three-man playoff rotation of Sabathia, Pettitte, and Burnett has been reduced to Sabathia, a recovering Pettitte, and Phil Hughes, with a slumping Burnett as a fourth starter.
Still, the Yankees are the Yankees, the Evil Empire, the Bronx Bombers, etc. and have all the tools necessary to win it, and are most certainly the favorites to win the ALCS.
National League Championship Series: San Francisco Giants @ Philadelphia Phillies
The Formula for this series: H x 2 + O. Halladay, Hamels, and Oswalt are the reason the Phillies are the favorites to win the National League Title again. Halladay is more favored to win Game 1 than Lincecum, and Oswalt's past success in the NLCS with the Astros should give him an edge over Matt Cain, and Hamels also has had tremendous success on this level, having won the NLCS and World Series MVP awards in 2008.
Do the Giants have a chance. My guess is only by a long shot. Firstly, they'd have to solve at least one of the H2O starters, but the Giants have a far weaker lineup than the Reds, who were the top offensive team in the NL, but were shut down by the Phillies in a sweep. Secondly, they would also have to beat one of the H2O starters in probably three games, unless the Phils run on a three man rotation as the Yankees did in their World Series run last year.
ALCS: Yankees in 6
NLCS: Phillies in 4. (Yes, I'm thinking a sweep for the second round in a row.)
What I want to happen
ALCS: Rangers in 7 (Seven games mean more baseball. )
NLCS: Phillies in 7