Tuesday officially marked the beginning of the MLB Playoffs with a wildcard play-in game. It is a great time of year for a number of reasons. Football fans are excited because the season has started and is progressing along. Basketball and Hockey fans are excited because their respective seasons are starting in the very near future. Outdoor enthusiasts are enjoying the shift in seasons and the fall foliage. The most exciting part of this time of year for me is the playoffs! At times the drama can be excruciating, but that is what makes the games great. I briefly wrote about the start of the season here, how do my non-committal predictions look? Let’s take a look at the participants and make some predictions for the World Series!
As mentioned previously, the NL wildcard play in game was played on Tuesday. It was a low scoring affair until the bottom of the 8th inning when the Nationals scored three runs to end the Brewers hopes of continuing on. The Brewers finished the season on a historic run to make the play in game, but it was not meant to be in the end. With the Nationals advancing to the play the Dodgers, that leaves the Cardinals to play the Braves in the other divisional series matchup. As you can see in this article, the Dodgers are the favorites to advance to the World Series. You can not rule anything out because all it takes is a player or pitcher to get red hot for a stretch and that can change an entire series, but it is hard to pick against the Dodgers.
On Wednesday the Rays beat the A’s in the AL wildcard play in game. The game was not overly exciting or full of drama, but the Rays did hit 4 homers on the way to the victory. They will not move on to face the Astros, while the A’s are headed home. The Rays will clearly have their hands full with the Astros as they are the heavy favorite to win it all. The Astros have 3 outstanding starting pitchers that are veterans and most likely will not get rattled in a big game situation. In the other Al division series, the Yankees will be playing the Twins. Both of these teams are capable of scoring plenty of runs, especially via the longball. I do not think either team has great starting pitching, but the Yankees should prevail based on the strength of their bullpen. Getting past the Astros will be very difficult for the Yankees as the Astros have the best staff and lineup in the game.
Take a look at this article, it offers predictions from experts. It is hard to argue with the prediction of the Astros vs. the Dodgers in the World Series. I personally think the Astros will win, but the Dodgers are due to win one soon! Some would wonder how it could be entertaining since these teams are such heavy favorites, but I would argue that the games have to be played and anything could happen. Maybe even the beloved Yankees will sneak in and win one!