They'd never admit a rooting interest for tonight's Game 5 between Tampa Bay and Texas — other than Brian Cashman's hoping that the game lasts 21 innings, which is totally a thing that can happen during the ALDS — but should the Yankees have a preference? They played .500 ball against Texas this year (sweeping once, getting swept once, and splitting a third series), and finished 8-10 against Tampa Bay. In recent contests, Texas's three-game sweep in September was a low point of the Yankees' season: Two of the games ended in the Rangers' last at-bat, with Mariano Rivera on the mound for one of them. Meanwhile, the Yankees split a four-game series with Tampa late last month, and dropped two out of three in an excellent series the week before. (Though when you factor in injuries to the likes of Josh Hamilton and Andy Pettitte — as well as the Yankees' blatant preparation for the playoffs — perhaps these September results aren't the most useful.) And, of course, either Cliff Lee or David Price awaits — though thanks to this series going the distance, not until Game 3, most likely. Feel free to pick your poison — or the Yankees' next victim, depending on your level of confidence — in the comments below. Or do you, like Cashman, not have a preference?
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