Let the games begin. Finally we get to the Fall Classic, some 7 months from where we began, all full of confidence and excitement (even if you were somewhere like KC or Baltimore.) Now it’s down to just two.
As I predicted way back in spring, the LA Dodgers return to the World Series for the 11th time, hoping to win it for the first time in 30 years.LA deserve credit galore for staving off Colorado in a Game 163 and making it back to the World Series for the second year in a row. This year though, unlike my prediction (which was for Houston to also repeat their appearance), their opponent, as we well know is the statistically best team in baseball this year- Boston.
I have some friends who are LA fans. As of yet, I have no one who’s a Red Sox fan. That said, I still have to pick Boston to win yet again. The Red Sox seem to be gaining momentum whereas the Dodgers seem to vary night to night. Mainly though, one has to like Boston’s advantages in having home advantage (an almost mind-blowing 57-24 at Fenway, although LA are a decent road team and one of the few teams with more road wins than home ones this year, being 47-34 outside of the City of Angels) and the accompanying DH advantage. MLB expect Matt Kemp to DH for LA when in the AL park. Nothing wrong with him as a hitter, but he’s no JD Martinez. And when in the National park, the Sox will find a way to keep Martinez’s killer bat in the lineup. Unlike the MLB site, I like Steve Pearce at first over David Freese too.
LA’s bullpen does seem better, and this year, one might think it’s all about the pens. Yet, Boston was the superior team in close games through the season too- 25-14 in one run games compared to LA who were a break-even .500 in such contests. And the X-factor… same as in the ALCS. Boston’s #2 co-ace, David Price. Price, as mentioned ad nauseum, has been historically bad in playoff starts for some weird reason. Finally he broke out of that last week to knock Houston out of the post-season, with 6 very strong shutout innings, 9 Ks and a ramped up velocity for his first post-season W in a start after 9 losses. I have to think that confidence will now spill over and bolster the Sox, even if wobby lefty Clayton Kershaw of the blue-and-white can outpitch wobbly lefty Chris Sale of the Clam Chowder Crew in game one.
My guess- Boston in 5. Unfortunately.