Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Looking Back...And Ahead

Sorry to interrupt the coverage of the Yankees demise...but there were in fact 4 teams that still advanced to the league championship series. Yes, I know ESPN would lead you to believe that the season ended Monday night when Joe Borowski struck out Jorge Posada...but that just isn't the case.

So, the Cubs/DBacks and Indians/Yankees series' both played about exactly how I thought they would. The overrated Cubs got swept by the pitching heavy Diamondbacks. The Yankees hitters were then shut down by the Indians great starters and bullpen. (Do you see a trend there?)

The Red Sox beating the Angels shouldn't surprise me. I had the Angels taking it, but maybe I was picking more with my heart than my brain. I really wanted the Angels to win-because as an Indians fan I knew it would be an easier test for the Tribe in the next round. Safe to say, Boston is the real deal and it will be a hell of an ALCS.

The Phillies/Rockies series really surprised me. These were two hot teams heading into the post season. I really thought that the law of averages would catch up with the Rocks' and they would have to eventually lose. Instead, the post season proved what seems to be the norm lately-expect the unexpected. The Rockies are a good team (I never thought they weren't) but I underestimated the fact that they are just on one of those magical rides.

Looking ahead, I'm still going to stick with my World Series prediction (that I made on April 3rd!) that its going to be the Indians and the Diamondbacks. Boston and Cleveland are about as even as can be. I think this goes 7 games. I'll take my chances with CC and Fausto getting the ball for 5 games of the series. (5 games? Yea, both will be ready to go in some capacity for a game 7-bet on it). But, Boston has Beckett, Schilling, and home field. However, Schilling isn't the same Schilling anymore. He can pitch a great 7 innings one game, but it could be 5 innings and 4 runs in another. The key though I think is going to be Dice-K. He has got shelled in the second half. Westbrook will at least keep the Indians in the game. Dice-K could just blow up on the Sox. Bullpens are about even, lest I remind you JoeBo had more saves this year than Paps. And the hitting...well great pitching neutralizes great hitting in the playoffs. Clutch hitting is what matter, and we know the Indians have that down pat after the ALDS. This will be an epic 7 game series, but I'm sticking by the Tribe to celebrate in bean town in game 7.

The Dbacks and Rockies may be just as intriuging. Both teams are evenly matched, but built completely differently. The Rockies are full of hitter who have some pretty impressive stats. The DBacks have a bunch of young guys whose stats aren't very good, but seem to always come up with the big hit. Starting pitching could be almost considered a wash, but 'Zona has a true ace in Cy Young award winner Brandon Webb. The Rockies may get to see him 3 times if it goes that far. The deciding factor though I think will be the bullpens. Again, Arizona is just lights out when you get into their pen. Valverde is Nasty. The Rockies pen has been on a hot streak, but can you really trust Latroy Hawkins? Matt Herges? Jorge Julio? I wouldn't want to. Thats why I think this goes 6, possibly 7, with the Diamondbacks coming out on top.

But, as I always say...thats why they play the games....

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