Statistics were referenced from MLB.
October is finally here and it's time for teams to punch their tickets to the Fall Classic. In the American League, the Astros, Yankees, Twins, A's and Rays are vying for that coveted world series spot. Likewise, the Dodgers, Braves, Cardinals, Nationals and Brewers look to do the same in the National League side. The Dodgers, Yankees, and Astros are the strongest teams in the race, but who's going to play spoiler? No matter the case, there's plenty of postseason baseball to look forward to. Here's my take on how it will all unfold.
NL Wild Card: Nationals over Cardinals
Look, the Cardinals will have red-hot Jack Flaherty on the mound in a one-game playoff. But if anyone can match him at his peak, its Max Scherzer. The Nationals pitching is so elite that they can overpower and use whoever they want in such a vital playoff game. Plus, they still got Rendon.
NL Divisional Series 1: Dodgers over Nationals in 3
The Nationals have never won a postseason series and still won't. Dodgers in three games, please. Even with Strasburg, Corbin, and Scherzer in the rotation, I think they will collapse as they always seem to do to the Dodgers in the NLDS.
NL Divisional Series 2: Braves over Cardinals in 4
The Braves have had a stupendous season to this point, coming out on top in one of the toughest divisions in baseball. However, the Cardinals are red-hot heading into October. But outside of Flaherty, who has to be used in the WC game and will thus have to rest, the Braves have a better rotation. This series might be a battle of the bullpens, with the Braves coming out on top if Acuña and Freddie stay healthy.
NL Championship Series: Dodgers over Braves in 6
The Dodgers are a great team and everyone knows this. But the Braves have a legitimate chance to pull an upset here. They have all the pieces coming together for them and even took two out of three from Dodgers at home. But, the Dodgers have home-field advantage the Braves play so poorly in LA that I cannot see them winning. Who really knows? There could be an upset!.
AL Wild Card: A's over Rays
The battle of two small-market teams is exactly what baseball needed. By far the underdogs of the playoffs, both the A's and the Rays will play tough and try to tell everyone who they are. But with the atmosphere being such a factor in a one-game playoff, the A's fans will make the Coliseum a tough place for the Rays to succeed.
AL Divisional Series 1: Twins over Yankees in 5
The Twins broke the single-season team home run record this year, hitting 307, shattering the previous record of 267. Here's the deal; the Yankees hit 306. So both teams are absolute powerhouses, plus each other's team pitching has faltered in September. I believe this series will have more runs than any other series, despite being only 5 games. I have to take the Twins in 5 because no one likes the Yankees, and the Twins deserve this.
AL Divisional Series 2: Astros over A's in 3
We can get excited about the Athletics all we want, but they have no shot against the Astros. If they win even one game, I would be seriously surprised. Nothing against the A's, they are one of my favorite teams and have had a wonderful story this year, but in no way can they measure up to Verlander and Jose Altuve.
AL Championship Series: Astros over Twins in 5
Again, it's almost funny how good the Astros are. An elite rotation, bullpen, and offense are almost insurmountable in a seven-game series. The Twins have a slight advantage in offense, but the Astros have postseason experience and a polished team in addition to absolutely fantastic pitching.
World Series: Houston Astros over Los Angeles Dodgers in 5
Imagine having Zach Grienke as your number three pitcher in your rotation. And two Cy Young candidates, one of which threw a no-hitter this year. And a number four starter which helped throw another one. The Dodgers have Ryu, Kershaw, and Buehler as still don't even come close to Verlander, Cole, and Grienke on the 'Stros. I expect this series to be quick and low-scoring, with the Dodgers losing their 3rd straight world series. And let's shoo-in Alex Bregman as MVP.