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MLB Update: The Final Four04:43
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Detroit Tigers catcher Alex Avila celebrates after New York Yankees' Alex Rodriguez struck out in the ninth inning and the Tigers won Game 5 of the ALDS on Thursday. (AP)
Detroit Tigers catcher Alex Avila celebrates after New York Yankees' Alex Rodriguez struck out in the ninth inning and the Tigers won Game 5 of the ALDS on Thursday. (AP)

The road to the World Series took some major turns this week. Only A Game's Bill Littlefield gets the final updates on the heated National League Division Series matchups between the Arizona Diamondbacks and the Milwaukee Brewers and the St. Louis Cardinals and the Philadelphia Phillies.

In the American League, both AL East teams were eliminated from the postseason, making this the first year since 2006 that the ALCS will not feature the New York Yankees or the Boston Red Sox. The Detroit Tigers will face last year's AL champs, the Texas Rangers, in a best-of-seven series for the division title starting on Saturday.

Richard Durrett, who covers the Rangers for ESPN Dallas, joins the show this week to comment on the AL showdown.

"This is the match-up I think a lot of folks people in baseball wanted to see," Durrett says. "[The teams are] two of the best offenses, two of the best pitching staffs in the AL, two of the more balanced teams in that league."

The Rangers will have the home field, a welcome advantage considering Detroit beat the Rangers six times out of nine meetings over the course of the season. Michael Rosenberg, who is covering the Tigers for the Detroit Free Press, also speaks with Bill this week and believes that Game 1 will ultimately come down to the performance of Tigers ace Justin Verlander.

"Are we gonna see the dominant Verlander as we saw this summer," asks Rosenberg, "Or are we gonna see someone that's just a shade shy of dominant?"

This segment aired on October 8, 2011.

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