OH. IT’S. FUCKING. LIT.
October baseball, baby. My personal favorite time of the year. The games are full of energy, tensity and tenacity. Tomorrow marks the official beginning of the MLB Post-Season as the Baltimore Orioles and Toronto Blue Jays meet in the AL Wild Card game in Toronto in a game that is sure to include some fireworks. Anytime you get a dickhead like Manny Machado together with a group of dickheads like the Blue Jays, things are bound to get explosive.
Here we will preview the wild card games as well as the first round match-ups and I might even make some predictions. So let’s do it!
AL WILDCARD GAME: Baltimore Orioles at Toronto Blue Jays
As mentioned above, I’m really hoping for some kind of huge brawl in this one. The Blue Jays are notorious for starting brawls for absolutely nothing and if last year was any indication, the Roger’s Center is actually an absolutely insane atmosphere for playoff baseball. The Blue Jays are just cocky ass holes and they rub other teams the wrong way. Couple that with Manny Machado, who is also a hothead and overreacts about everything, and you’ve got yourself a recipe for an intense bloodbath of a baseball game.
As far as the game itself goes, Chris Tillman vs Marcus Stroman could be a decent match-up but, my guess is that this is going to be a relatively high scoring game. The Blue Jays took the season series 10-9 and had an ERA of 3.81 against the O’s compared to the Orioles 5.82 ERA against Toronto. Both teams are home run hitting teams and I see this turning into a slugfest. If that becomes the case, I like the Blue Jays winning this one at home.
Ketch’s Prediction: Blue Jays 9-7
NL WILDCARD GAME: San Francisco Giants at New York Mets
Unlike the AL Wildcard game, this one is almost definitely going to be a 1-0 game. This game has the potential to be one of the great post-season matchups of all time. Madison Bumgarner vs THORRRRRR
Now in reality, the Mets are like the little engine that could. It’s unbelievable that the Mets have made it to the wildcard game. Look at their opening day lineup:
Granderson – 9
Wright – 5
Cespedes – 7
Duda – 3
Walker – 4
Conforto – DH
Cabrera – 6
d’Arnaud – 2
Lagares – 8
And here was their lineup on October 1st (the day they clinched)
Reyes – 5
Cabrera – 6
Cespedes – 7
Granderson – 8
Bruce – 9
TJ Rivera – 4
Loney – 3
d’Arnaud – 2
Colon – 1
Everyone on their infield except for Asdruble Cabrera is new. Travis d’Arnaud, their alleged starting catcher finished the season with 15 RBI. Michael Conforto, who everyone thought would be the centerpiece of their lineup by this time was sent down to Triple A and they still don’t have a centerfielder. Oh and did I mention that Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom and Steven Matz are all out for the season and Zach Wheeler never came back from the DL? Yet somehow, despite their pets heads falling off, here they are.
The Giants, while haven’t had a ton of injuries have just under performed in the second half of the season. They were the definition of stumbling to the finish line. I do think that this game will be close and I do think it will be a pitcher’s duel, but I think that the Giants are just straight up a better team. There’s more talent with the SF and I think they advance.
KETCH’S PREDICTION: Giants 3-1
AL DIVISIONAL ROUND:
Boston Red Sox vs Cleveland Indians
Quite an intriguing match-up we have in this series. A lot of people thought that the Indians were the most complete team in the league for a majority of the season. Meanwhile, the Red Sox have probably been the hottest team in baseball over the last few weeks. Both teams have high powered offenses and solid pitching. The Indians bullpen probably has the edge, but the Sox have had the best bullpen over the month of September. It really is an even match-up.
Now I’m not going to let my own bias get in the way here, but I don’t see the Red Sox losing the series in David Ortiz’s final season. Am I worried about David Price and his “horrible post-season past?” No way. He’s not “the guy.” He’s the number two. Cy Porcello is our number one and dare I say, that may take some pressure off of Price? The other thing is that the Sox hit good pitching. And, above all else, the Cavaliers won the NBA title so there is NO WAY that Cleveland wins anything for another 50 or so years.
KETCH’S PREDICTION: Red Sox in 3 (Red Sox in 4 is my non-biased opinion)
Toronto Blue Jays/Baltimore Orioles vs Texas Rangers
I’m hoping that the Blue Jays win the wildcard game because the Blue Jays and Rangers have a lot of bad blood and that would be a really fucking intense series.
Now here’s the thing; I live on the East Coast so naturally we don’t hear a whole lot about the Texas Rangers who had the best record in the American League so here’s some things you should know about the Rangers:
- Nomar Mazara is a really good rookie.
- Roughned Odor (the guy that punched Joey Bats in the face) hit 33 homers and drove in 88 runs this year. The dude can hit.
- Adrian Beltre can still hit the shit out of the ball and plays a stellar third base
- Former National’s shortstop Ian Desmond had a huge bounce back year as a center fielder for the Rangers
- Jonathan Lucroy is on the Rangers. He’s been an all-star catcher the last three years.
- Cole Hamels had a great year and is a proven winner in the post-season
- Yu Darvish is back
Look basically what I’m trying to say is that the Rangers are a really really good team. Like, better than the Blue Jays or Orioles.
KETCH’S PREDICTION: Rangers in 3
NL DIVISIONAL ROUND
Los Angeles Dodgers vs Washington Nationals
Well game one could be something special with Kershaw vs Scherzer. Now on paper, the Nationals are the better team. But they lost Wilson Ramos to an ACL, Stephen Strasburg is out this series, Daniel Murphy hasn’t played much in the last week because of a strained ass and Bryce Harper has a bruised thumb and has REGRESSED THIS YEAR THERE I SAID IT BRYCE HARPER HAS REGRESSED THIS YEAR.
Of course Harper is battling an injury (neck), but come on. He’s had a bad year, alright? He hasn’t looked great at the plate all year. He’s not balanced, and he’s getting beat on average fastballs. I don’t not like Harper either. I really hope he gets healthy and figures it out because he’s one of the most fun players to watch when he’s on, but right now, and for a majority of the season, he’s not on.
Which brings us to the Dodgers. The Dodgers have a nice team. Corey Seager is one of the best young players in the game. He’s a rookie and he hit .306 with 26 homers and drove in 72 runs. Not too shabby. Justin Turner continues to baffle me and be a good player in the league. Fill in that lineup with smooth swinging Adrian Gonzalez, Chase Utley and Howie Kendrick and you got yourself a good lineup. On top of that, you of course have novelty factor of winning for Vin Scully.
KETCH’S PREDICTION: Dodgers in 4
San Francisco Giants/New York Mets vs Chicago Cubs
If the Mets beat the Giants, the Cubs will sweep. If the Giants beat the Mets, the Cubs will win in four. The Cubs are very good. Not sure if they win it all, but I’ll be shocked if they don’t make it out of the first round.
KETCH’S PREDICTION: Cubs in 3