The 2 best teams from the regular season rarely make it to the World Series. As baseball fans you understand the baseball playoffs can be sort of a crap shoot with whoever has the best pitching at the time and the best pitcher sometimes. I equate it to having a hot goaltender in the hockey playoffs. Madison Baumgardner can legit carry a team to the World Series like he did with the Giants. This year the team that started the best in the Houston Astros and the team that had the best middle of the season in the Los Angeles Dodgers made it work int h playoffs to reach this point. The Dodgers made short work of each of their 2 opponents while the Astros went to game 7 against the Yankees.
The Yankees were built for Yankee Stadium so its not really a wonder why they went 6-0 in the postseason at home. The Astros play much better at home but also don’t really fit well in Yankee Stadium with its ridiculous HR dimensions. I don’t see a lot of teams fitting well in that ballpark except maybe the Yankees and possibly a team like the Rockies that rely on the long ball more than most. The Astros are going to rely on their core lineup but also their to bulldogs on the mound. Now Keuchel and Verlander get to start on the road which obviously isn’t ideal but not sure there can be a more ideal ballpark fro them to pitch in than Chavez Revine. Its a complete pitchers park especially at night when the air Geta a little thicker. Keuchel also has the advantage of never having faced the Dodgers lineup for the most part. Keuchel is extremely good against players that have not faced him much or at all and thats the case with this dodgers lineup. Look for Keuchel to get ahead early and make the Dodgers lineup hit his pitch when he’s ahead in the count. Offensively the Astros will rely on the RHH in their lineup, but thats not much of a change from the past. Altuve has been a monster mostly at home but I think he can get to Kershaw. Will Kershaw melt under the pressure a little like he has in the past? This is a whole different stage than a division game or a game 1 of the NLCS against an overrated Cubs team. This team can hit 1-8. Springer needs to get on base for the middle of the order to give them some opportunities to drive the runs in. Josh Reddick is a guy I would watch out for in this series. He plays with a lot of fire and didn’t like some of the stuff that happened with his time in LA. He could have a big series or he could press too much. He will always play solid defense but he could have a major impact on the offense.
As far as the Dodgers go they would love to just keep the status Quo going from the last 2 series. I think they have the starting pitching advantage in the series if you just look at on paper. They definitely have the bullpen advantage. Jansen is probably the best closer in baseball. He’s the 2017 Version on Mariano Rivera where he throws 1 pitch and you still can’t hit it. The Dodgers lineup will be interesting mix of youth and veterans. Bellinger and Seager being the young studs and throw in Puig cause he’s mentally younger than most. No doubting the talent on this team but it will be interesting to see if they can put it together. Kershaw has been very good in these playoffs but his first World Series start will test him in my opinion on the mental side. If he can get through the lineup clean the first time I think he could settle in. Getting Seager back is a major boost for the lineup. Seager is an absolute stud offensively and defensively. He will be batting 6th in the game and it will be interesting to see if the rest hurts his timing in anyway. Speaking of rest I don’t like teams that come int the World Series with too much time off. for the Dodgers I liked that they didn’t sweep the Cubs but they still finished them off rather quick. Will that effect them like it did to the Rockies in 2007 and the Tiger in 2006? That remains to be seen but I do think it will have some effect. Puig is going to have to be a star and drive in some runs and I think the Dodgers need to win game 1.
Game 1 Prediction
Astros 3 Dodgers 2
Astros in 7
This is definitely an off the wall prediction going against Kershaw and against the Dodgers in the series as well. The Astros seem to click at home so I think they can put a lot of pressure on the Dodgers if they win 1 of the first 2 and then get to go home for 3. I think they can do it cause they have their 2 best pitchers going in a pitcher friendly park to start the series.
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