We were so close to chaos in the American League wild card race that year, with the Rangers, Indians, and Rays fighting for the two wild card spots in the final weekend. Heading into Sunday, September 29, the Indians were at 91 wins with the Rangers and Rays at 90 each.
MLB even announced a scenario should the three teams tie after 162 games. The Indians and Rays would have played in Cleveland Monday for one wild card spot, with the loser heading to Texas Tuesday to play the Rangers for the other spot.
But from the Angels’ perspective, they could have eliminated the Rangers by beating them and the Rays inning on Sunday, September 29. Trout got things going early, as he often does, in the first inning, with a solo home run against Yu Darvish.
This was the fourth of four career home runs for Trout against Darvish. His 49 plate appearances against Darvish is his sixth-most against any pitcher, with Trout batting .317/.429/.659 against him.
Trout had 27 home runs in 2013, finishing second in AL MVP voting to Miguel Cabrera for the second time in two full major league seasons. This was Trout’s 62nd career home run. When he touched home plate on his home run, Trout scored his 109th run, leading the American League for the second straight season. He also walked in the sixth inning, his AL-best 110th walk in 2013.
Texas didn’t get spoiled by the Angels, beating them 6-2. The Rays also won on Sunday, but the Indians refused to cooperate, ruining a three-way tie by also winning Sunday to clinch one wild card spot. The Rangers and Rays did have to play a Game 163 tiebreaker Monday for the other wild card spot, which was extra baseball. Given that we are waiting for any MLB now, that sounds like a dream.