What is happening?

The American League wrote the wrong date and sent two interns to the ALCS. Instead of the normal teams with big salaries and bigger asshole fans, these two small market chumps are duking it out for their combined 10th appearance in the World Series. Meanwhile the National League has brought their biggest bruisers. If this were the NL High School, they'd be the ones that never knew your name. In the yearbook they're voted Most Likely To Beat You Within An Inch Of Your Life. Aside from the Yankees, these two teams have appeared in the World Series the most, with a combined 38 appearances in their 263 years.

But to fully comprehend the separation between the have and have-nots in the ALCS and the NLCS, we must compare to realms beyond baseball.

As a Child

Giants/Cardinals: If a child had been born the last time one of these teams won the World Series, it would be, at most, turning three, spending his or her days at the playground bullying kids twice the size.

Royals/Orioles: If born the last time these two teams saw glory, the kid would have already graduated college with some worthless liberal arts degree, started and stopped drinking multiple times, owe the library hundreds of dollars in late fees, and moved home to watch his (much cooler) three year old sibling while fretting about male pattern baldness and his fast approaching thirtieth birthday.

As Dog Reference

Giants/Cardinals: Whatever brutal beast is used in dictatorships to rip the throats out of political enemies.

Royals/Orioles: A middling case of heartworm that, if not been caught so early, might have caused some real damage down the line.

As Benevolent Collector of Personal Data Through Social Media

Giants/Cardinals: 1.2 million combined Twitter followers (~1/60 of Katy Perry.)

Royals/Orioles: 515 thousand combined Twitter followers (~ 515,000 more than me.)

As Sandra Bullock Movie

Giants/Cardinals: The Blind Side - A movie that I did not see nor have any interest in, but understood that the Oscar might say less about her talent(?) and more about the Academy Award system.

Royals/Orioles: Demolition Man - The first Rated R movie I ever saw. Though I've gone back and watched it multiple times over the years, it has never once shown even a glimpse of surpassing my twelve year old expectations.

As the Music People Like Other Than "Everything"

Giants/Cardinals: Rap
Royals/Orioles: Country

As Novelty Kitchen Device

Giants/Cards: The Microwave

Royals/Orioles: That microwave egg cooker responsible for really unappetizing cylinders. The sort of worthless gift that still pisses you off years later whenever you stumble across it in some forgotten kitchen cabinet.

As Reasons to Visit

San Francisco/St. Louis: There are numerous business and personal reasons to explore these culturally and historically significant portions of America that are forever linked towards expansion and looking ahead.

Kansas City/Baltimore: The Delta flight is $80 less here than whatever city you actually plan on visiting and it only costs $60 to rent a car.

– Ian "Salmon Season" Golding (@iggolding)

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