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Playoff teams: who’s who

American League
Los Angeles Angels
The Angels of 2009 will be remembered for a handful of reasons. 
First off, the fantastic offense that led them past the surprising Texas Rangers and into first place for the third straight year. 
On Aug. 19, the Angels fielded a lineup of all .300 hitters at the latest point in a season in basrball history. 

But the Angels made up for the lack of woes on offense with a plethora of pitching problems. The main issue the Angels encountered was injuries. 
But the main reason this season will be remembered for the tragedy they experienced at the beginning of the year. On April 9, Nick Adenhart was killed in a car accident. Throughout the year, not only have the Angels had to fight through the grind of the season, but also the loss of a comrade.
New York Yankees
The story on the Yankees is always the same. Money. But this last offseason they really outdid themselves. 
With big name arms and bats available, the Yankees decided they had roughly half a billion dollars lying around to spend. Pitchers C.C. Sabathia and A.J Burnett and first baseman Mark Teixeira were added to the tune of a little less than half a billion dollars.
But they have spent the money very well so far this season and secured the best record in baseball and coasted to a victory in the tough AL East. 
-Bill Hopkins
National League
The National League teams that have made it to the NLCS playoffs are the Los Angles Dodgers and the Philadephia Phillies. 
The Dodgers: It is really no wonder why the Dodgers are in the playoffs. They had a phenomenal start to the regular season.
Now, as most of you may know, the end of their season wasn’t as impressive, but they still played quality baseball.
In the beginning of the playoffs, the Dodgers faced Midwest powerhouse, the St. Louis Cardinals, power hitters like Manny Ramirez and Andre Ethier allowed them to close the series in three games.
Their biggest weakness in the beginning of the playoffs was poor fielding, but they’ve seemed to over come that issue.
The Phillies: After winning the previous World Series, the Phillies have preformed consistently throughout the season. They don’t charge out of the bullpen like the Dodgers, but they never had a down slope in the year, which makes them a very strong team. 
Ryan Howard has been the main power source for the Phillies, through the NLCS playoffs; he has gone five for 15, with five runs scored and two homeruns.
And Howard paired up with several other amazing players, the Phillies are a power to be reckoned with.
Both teams proved their strengths in regular season and clearly deserved to be in the playoffs. 
-Jeri Kohn
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