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10/07/09 2:59 PM EST

Past results don't indicate playoff success

Swept by Yanks in regular season, Twins can turn it around

You could almost hear the snickering in the background. Even as the Minnesota Twins were getting props for the tenacity that brought them an American League Central title, they were also getting grief because it brought them the New York Yankees.

The Yankees with the Majors' best record. The Yankees who have won 88 games since mid-May.

The Yankees who drubbed the Twins in regular-season play, seven games to none and 41 runs to 25.

Welcome, people seemed to be saying to Ron Gardenhire's club, and have a nice winter.

Well, not so fast.

Baseball history is replete with postseason series doing a 180 from the regular-season outcome between teams.

We aren't talking about making up garden-variety regular-season ground, but genuine avalanches.

Like only a year ago, when the Boston Red Sox mocked their 1-8 summer record against the Los Angeles Angels in October with a 3-to-1 AL Division Series walkover.

Has it always been like this? No -- only since the beginning of divisional play in 1969, which created the possibility of postseason rematches.

Prior to that, there were only World Series between teams which never met during the regular season.

Since, there has been plenty of haunting and avenging.

A descending chronological look at the biggest postseason U-turns, with regular-season wins between the teams in parentheses, and series outcome:

• 2008 ALDS: Red Sox (1) over Angels (8), 3-1
• 2008 NLDS: Dodgers (2) over Cubs (5), 3-0
• 2007 ALDS: Indians (0) over Yankees(6), 3-1
• 2006 World Series: Cardinals (0) over Tigers (3), 4-1
• 2006 ALDS: Tigers (2) over Yankees (5), 3-1
• 2005 NLCS: Astros (5) over Cardinals (11), 4-3
• 2005 NLDS: Astros (1) over Braves (5), 3-1
• 2003 NLDS: Marlins (1) over Giants (5), 3-1
• 1999 NLDS: Mets (2) over D-backs (7), 3-1
• 1998 ALDS: Indians (3) over Red Sox (8), 3-1
• 1988 NLCS: Dodgers (1) over Mets (10), 4-3
• 1983 NLCS: Phillies (1) over Dodgers (11), 3-1
• 1971 NLCS: Pirates (3) over Giants (9), 3-1

Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Change for a Nickel. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.