Posts Tagged ‘World Series’

My MLB Postseason and World Series Predictions

October 4th, 2016 by Kyle Lutz | Comments Off on My MLB Postseason and World Series Predictions | Filed in Baseball, General, MLB


Now that the season’s ended, the postseason begins, and less than a month from now, the Fall Classic will resume; since it ended last November 1st. Unfortunately for the defending World Series champion Royals, they won’t be returning to the postseason, after finishing at .500 this season. With the best record in baseball, the Cubs won 103 games, the fifth most in franchise history, and they’ll be making their second-consecutive appearance in the postseason. With all of that being said, here are my postseason predictions.

Postseason Predictions (the winning teams are on the far right)

October 4th- AL Wild Card- Baltimore @ Toronto– Toronto 

Like the other Wild Card game this week, this match-up tonight will be a hard-fought one. Both teams finished with 89 wins, Toronto has some of the best power hitters in the game, one of the best third baseman in the league, in Josh Donaldson (.284 average, 37 home runs, 99 RBIs), while Baltimore has a fellow AL MVP candidate, in fellow third baseman Manny Machado (.294 average, 37 home runs, 96 RBIs). Among American League teams, Baltimore ranked first in home runs (253), although they only had a team average of .256. Although it’s only one game, the problem this year for Baltimore was their pitching staff- or lack thereof.

Baltimore’s ace Kevin Gausman will most likely get the nod, although he only won nine games and had a 3.61 ERA. For Toronto, they’ll most likely hand the ball off to former Phillie J.A. Happ, who surprisingly won 20 games this year; with a 3.18 ERA to boot. I’m going with Toronto, based off Happ’s success this season, as well as the strong one-two punch of Donaldson and designated hitter Edwin Encarnacion; who had 42 home runs this year.


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Kansas City Royals are your 2015 World Champions!

November 2nd, 2015 by Ryan Waterman | Comments Off on Kansas City Royals are your 2015 World Champions! | Filed in Baseball, General, MLB

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The 7+ month journey to the Commissioner’s Trophy is officially over, and after a little more than five games (after factoring in the extra innings), the Kansas City Royals are your 2015 World Champions of Baseball! The Royals accomplished this fact, by knocking off the rather surprising NL pennant winning Mets in five games.

Starting things off with the Royals, they dominated their way to the playoffs.  Finishing 95-67, Kansas City rolled to the top seed in the American League and the fourth best record in baseball (behind the Cubs, Cards, and Pirates).   Behind the arms of their pitching staff, the power of their bats, and the speed of the baserunners, the Royals gritted their way through a pair of grueling series in the ALDS against the Houston Astros (5 Games) and the Toronto Blue Jays (6 games).

In the meanwhile, the Mets took a different road.  Following a emotion-fueled five game thriller with the Dodgers, New York plowed right through the upstart Chicago Cubs in route to their first WS appearance since the 2000 “Subway Series” against the Yankees.   Behind their four studs, and the “Ageless Wonder” Bartolo Colon, the Mets finished 90-72, shocking the baseball world by beating out the Washington Nationals for the NL East Crown.  While both teams took different paths, they had one thing in mind…..a collision course with the trophy in sight.


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The Curse of the Phillies BIG Contracts and Renewals

April 28th, 2013 by Emily Phung | Comments Off on The Curse of the Phillies BIG Contracts and Renewals | Filed in Baseball, General, Phillies


by Emily Phung

I have always been an avid Philadelphia sports fan, but my frustration began in 2000 when I could not understand why the Philly teams were not winning any games especially the Phillies. That’s when I learned about the curse of Billy Penn. The gist of the story is that when Liberty Place was built in ’87, no Philly sports team won a championship from that point forward. The theory was that the losses were associated with the William Penn statue (which is affixed on top of City Hall). The statue was no longer the tallest object in the Philly skyline. In spring 2007, I decided to take matters into my own hands (what true sports fan wouldn’t?) and try to reverse the curse by setting up an incense-filled shrine filled with all my Philly sports bobbleheads, figurines, jerseys, and autographed pictures to rid of the bad demons that this curse held. That year, the Phils won the NL East after a 14 year draught! I was over joyous so I continued burning incense and building a Philly themed sports shrine the next few years. Coincidentally, for the following 4 years, the Phils continued to clinch the NL East division with one World Series win. I honestly think that the William Penn statue atop the Comcast Center did not reverse the curse, but I did (so I may be a bit biased). 2012 was a busy year personally so I never had the opportunity to hold this annual ritual. To my dismay, the Phils did not continue their winning streak. However, one thing is certain since 2012; the Phillies players have been struggling individually after renewal or extension of a bigger contract. Is the Curse of Billy Penn back?

I honestly think it is back and behind that curse is Rubén Amaro, the general manager responsible for those Phillies contracts. Bold statement you say, well let’s break down the circumstantial evidence in regards to the curse of the Big Phillies contract (aka version of the Curse of Billy Penn). First up is Ryan Howard, the Phillies home run king. 2004 he entered into the Philadelphia scene as a young promising player. He certainly was one of the best rookies that came into the Philly scene. After ’04, Howard began to be on ‘fire’. He was Rookie of the Year in ’05. Then MVP in ’06, contributing to the Phillies World Series in ’08, but after ’10 it seems like downhill. Ironically, 2010 was the year that Howard signed his extension. A whopping $125 million contract was rewarded to Howard, which many claim is too much for a continuously injured-hampered athlete (Achilles heel to groin injuries). Howard is not as an effective power hitter as before and that may be due to his recovery from prior injuries. Amaro threw down a big contract down to keep him, and now he’s stuck with Howard for a while. Is Amaro a bit upset? One might think so since Howard hasn’t had a long of game time and that means Amaro is not getting his money’s worth. It’s unfortunate, but that is the truth at the end of the day. Howard is a great player all around, but that big payday may be haunting Amaro.

The most recent of all contracts is this past summer’s resigning of World Series MVP, Cole Hamels. He has a 6 year contract with an average of $24 million dollars. That is the second highest in baseball after Yankees’ Sabitha. Amaro definitely found a rewarding way to thank Hamels for posting up some great pitching stats during the World Series playoff games. After Hamels signed on for a few more seasons, terrible pitching started to hinder him resulting in many surrendered runs and major game losses. Can Hamels dig himself out of this pitching deficit? I believe so, because it is still early in the season. Hamels is young and still has time to rebound back to his recognizable pitching self.

Cliff Lee was the hottest pitcher at the end of baseball season 2010. The Rangers and Yankees made lucrative contract offers to tempt Cliff to join on board. However, Cliff was ‘PHaith’ful to the Phillies nation, and came back to in December ’12 with a $120 million contract thanks to Amaro. After signing his contract, Lee began swallowing his pride a little bit since he was not posting up the results as prior years. Eventually, Lee got back to his momentum, but one must wonder was he cursed just a bit by signing Amaro’s big contract.

After his contract extension in ’10, it has been somewhat a quick decline for Roy Halladay. Halladay, known as the overachieving double Cy Young winner and pitcher of the perfect game in ‘10, is not pitching like he used due to a shoulder ridden pain that occurred last year. He used to throw ‘fastballs’ and now can barely pitch faster than 90 mph. Roy even claims to be tired and worn out and admits that his strength is not where it used to be. Thankfully, other teammates such as Ruiz has been helping Halladay make some great defensive plays off the pitching mound. Halladay’s age may be showing, and Amaro has to make a decision if to keep Halladay after this season or it’s time to let him go.


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Bat Werth Fourth

November 3rd, 2009 by Christian | 10 Comments | Filed in Baseball, General, Phillies

Jayson Werth

Paging Charlie Manuel! Paging Charlie Manuel!

Charlie— Move Jayson Werth into the cleanup spot and drop Ryan Howard to the five hole for Game 6.

Why? Simple. It gives the Phillies a better chance to win.

I know Howard is the best slugger in baseball. I know his numbers over the past few years are amazing. He’s got a great work ethic, and is by all accounts, a terrific young man. But right now, Werth is on fire. Howard is ice cold. And against lefties, Werth is the better hitter.

Look at the numbers. In the regular season, Werth dominated lefties, while Howard struggled badly:

Werth: .302 avg., 14 HR, 37 RBI’s, .436 on base %, 33 strikeouts.

Howard: .207 avg., 6 HR, 33 RBI’s, .298 on base %, 83 strikeouts.


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Phils Have Em Right Where They Want Em

November 2nd, 2009 by Christian | 11 Comments | Filed in Baseball, General, Phillies

Cliff Lee

For those of us who sank into a depression around midnight last night, I’m now drunk enough on coffee to offer some good news. The Phillies can still win the series.

Here’s how:

Cliff Lee dominates tonight and AJ Burnett struggles with his curve, forcing him to throw fastballs. Ryan Howard wakes from his slumber, hitting a grand slam, leading the Phillies to take Game 5.

There’s a day off before Game 6, just enough time for the seeds of doubt to bloom in the New York media and clubhouse. Remember 2004 anyone?

Pedro Martinez pitches a gutty seven innings to keep the game close. The sleeping giant now awake, Howard hits another homerun, and the Phillies win a slugfest to take Game 6 by one run, in extra innings, forcing Game 7.

All of the pressure is now on the Yankees. Charlie Manuel announces Cliff Lee will pitch Game 7 on three days rest vs. CC Sabathia.

Lee pitches a complete game shutout. The Phillies get to Sabathia in the late innings, and win the greatest World Series in modern history on a double in the gap by Raul Ibanez in the eighth!


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Location, location, location

October 31st, 2009 by Christian | 16 Comments | Filed in Baseball, General, Phillies

There’s an old adage that you only need to know three things about real estate: location, location, location.

For Game 3 of the World Series tonight, there are three critical locations you need to know about also:

LOCATION #1. Cole Hamels fastball. If Hamels can locate his fastball, he’s dominating. Last year he did and was virtually unhittable in the postseason. This year, he’s struggled with it.

According to shortstop Jimmy Rollins, “He hasn’t been able to place his fastball where he wants it. You see the catcher setting up outside, and he’s pulling the ball in. When he’s doing that, it makes his changeup a lot less effective. When he’s spotting his fastball and he can throw the changeup in the same spot 10, 12 mph slower, it becomes tough to hit. But when he’s struggling with one pitch, you can almost start cancelling out the other, and I think that’s the biggest difference.”

Take it to The Bank. The Phillies have enjoyed home cooking, posting an 11-1 postseason record at Citizen’s Bank Park since the beginning of last year’s playoffs. The Bank is the best home field advantage in baseball.

The seats behind home plate. New Yankee Stadium looks like a corporate shell of Old Yankee Stadium. The old place was built for the Bronx Bombers. The new digs seem to be made for the Manhattan IBMers. On television, half the seats appeared to be empty. Not exactly sure why. I’ve read different reasons for it, from overpriced tickets, to Cliff Lee’s dominant performance. But one thing you can be sure of – you won’t see empty seats in Philly.

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The Yankees’ Hidden Opponent

October 27th, 2009 by Christian | 12 Comments | Filed in Baseball, General, Phillies
Big Ben

Big Ben

Father Time commands that youth must be served. And in this World Series, between two evenly matched teams, age may be the deciding factor. It’s not glaringly obvious, but there is a significant gap among the teams, and it’s in a crucial area. Look at the top five hitters on the respective clubs:

Leadoff Hitter:
Jimmy Rollins is 30, Derek Jeter is 35
Second Hitter: Shane Victorino is 28, Johnny Damon is 36
Third Hitter: Chase Utley is 30, Mark Texiera is 29
Cleanup Hitter: Ryan Howard is 29, Alex Rodriguez is 34
Five Hitter: Jayson Werth is 30, Hideki Matsui is 35

That’s an average of 29.4 years for the Phillies and 33.8 years for the Yankees. If you remove Mark Texiera from the equation, four of the top five Yankees average 35 years of age. That’s a little long in the tooth in athletics, and the longer the season goes, the more you’d think natural physiology favors the Phillies. I’ll take the twenty-nine year olds over the thirty-five year olds every time, especially in a long series.

The rest of the starters and the top four pitchers on each team are about even in age, with the exception of the Yankees 40 year old closer, Mariano Rivera.

Six Hitter: Raul Ibanez is 37, Jorge Posada is 38
Seven Hitter: Pedro Feliz is 34, Robinson Cano is 27
Eight Hitter: Carlos Ruiz is 30, Nick Swisher is 29
Nine Hitter: Ben Francisco is 28, Melky Cabrera is 25


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