Angels building postseason tradition
Halos headed for entertaining series with White Sox
ANAHEIM -- When the Angels wake up Tuesday morning, you'll have to excuse them for not knowing where exactly they are.It will be their third state in two days of frenetic travel and fantastic baseball. So, is this New York, California or Illinois? Let's just call it the state of euphoria, and leave it at that. After the Angels beat -- beat? how about survived, by the laces of Darin Erstad's first baseman's glove? -- the New York Yankees, 5-3, in Game 5 of the American League Division Series here Monday night, champagne corks weren't the only things popping in their clubhouse. So were the buttons on their jerseys, their chests were puffed out so much. "We've been trying to reach a certain level, and now we're there," said Tim Mead, the Angels' vice president of communications. When this franchise broke through in 2002 for its first World Series championship, that set a foundation. But if you do not build on a foundation, it becomes just a cold slab. After 2004, albeit a losing Division Series appearance, and Monday night's glory, the Angels have added on to that foundation. Now it is a tradition. "It's incredible," said manager Mike Scioscia. "To be able to beat a team like the Yankees at any point is unbelievable." "Absolutely," agreed Adam Kennedy. "They play the game right. It took a perfect series to beat them." Next, we're in for a perfectly entertaining AL Championship Series. Don't shoot till you see the White of their Sox? The Angels have Chicago in their crosshairs. The teams' similar styles -- hustle for the manufactured run, amid frequent big bangs -- complement each other and should make for a very competitive and entertaining series. The teams met 10 times during the regular season, the Angels winning six, half of the games ending in one-run affairs. By the way, has a team ever played a Championship Series game hung over? The Angels' post-victory celebration was not extraordinary. What is unusual is a postseason agenda concentrated by Saturday's rainout of Game 4 of this Series, resulting in Game 1 of the ALCS unfolding Tuesday without a break.
Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.