We have the NLDS and ALDS starting up tomorrow, so I’ll give my previews and predictions for each series. I think this post season has the potential to be the most interesting and entertaining in a long time, especially in the AL where things could get really interesting. Here we go:
Rays vs. Rangers
Game 1 is tomorrow and it looks to be a solid matchup even though they’ll probably be more players on each teams roster than people in the stands. I still can’t believe a team that was the best in baseball for most of the season finished 22nd in attendance with 23,000 a game. Well, regardless, they’ve got home field in that shit hole of a stadium and host the Texas Rangers. I like the Rangers offense even though they have lineup cancer Jeff Franceour now, but I have to give the edge to the Rays pitching staff/ bullpen and that’s what wins in the post season. Plus they’ve been there before and know what it takes to go far in the playoffs. Lee vs. Price should be an incredible duel, and don’t expect too many runs in the opening game. I actually hope the Rangers win, but I see the Rays taking it.
Rays in 4
The Yanks have stumbled in September and lost out on any type of first round home field, but will it matter? The Yankees have always owned the Twins and I don’t really see that changing this season, even though the Yankees starters aren’t nearly as good as they were last year. We’ve seen C.C. lead an entire team before, and he just might have to do it again this season. But c’mon Twins, I just don’t see you winning any of these pitching matchups. Liriano vs. Sabathia? Pettite who’s always unbeatable in the post season vs. Carl Pavano? Duensing vs. Hughes (this might be the only slightly favorable matchup for the Twins but it’ll be in NY). Also, the Yankees still have Rivera and its October, ’nuff said.
Yankees in 4
Phillies vs. Reds
Well, it kills me to say this but the with Hamels back to form and a rejuvinated Oswalt, the Phillies have the best team in baseball again. I just don’t see any team from the NL beating them, especially the Reds. There is no way the Reds will compete in pitching or hitting and will probably get swept even though they have the future MVP in their lineup. Sorry Dusty Baker, but you played in the worst division of like all time this year and will get an early wake up call vs. the Phils.
Phillies in 3
Braves vs. Giants
Many analysts are picking the Giants here but there is no way in hell I am. I think this will be the most even series of the four, with both teams essentially being mirror images of each other. I’ll give the starting rotation edge to the Giants because it’ll be tough to top Lincecum and Cain even though Lowe and Huson have been equally if not more impressive this season stat wise, but the Braves have a better offense and a deeper bullpen. If the Braves can find out a way to win on the road they’ll be fine in this series as Zito is horrendous on the road and will probably start in game 4 (if there is one of course). Game 2 will be the key to the series with Matt Cain matching up with Tommy Hanson, as the Braves will NEED to take 1 in San Fran and finish off the series in Atlanta where they’ve been prettymuch unstoppable this season.
Braves in 4