The game between the St. Louis Cardinals and Los Angeles Dodgers took thirteen innings to reach a bottom line in favor of the Cardinals. Don Mattingly is getting clobbered with criticism for moves he made during the game. To be honest, some of them were lame. But then again, it is fairly unlucky when none of them worked. But yeah, a lot of those moves were based on old baseball traditions that are not grounded in statistical reality. To me, the most egregious was that in such a game, the best pitcher in his bullpen only pitched to one batter.
But anyway, the marathon bore out my pick for the game and if memory serves, I have been correct in the last five games. Two more chances to screw up occur today, which is exciting for baseball fans and nerve-wracking for a game picker. The NLCS features its second game while the ALCS begins today.
- The Dodgers over the Cardinals: After watching these two teams compete, I now like the Cardinals for this series. That being said, Clayton Kershaw is the best pitcher in baseball. Picking against him is not logical. Then again, the Cardinals are going with Michael Wacha, who has had some amazing moments himself in the post season. I cannot see Kershaw allowing any more than three runs and the odds of him giving up that many are long. That does not leave Wacha any margin for error. The best the Cards can hope for here is that Wacha matches zeroes until it becomes a bullpen game. Sure, anything can happen and Kershaw can face extreme bad luck and bounces. But I have to go with him here despite the home town crowd.
- The Red Sox over the Tigers: The Red Sox have truly bowled me over all season with how good they are. They will not get punked in this series like the Yankees did last year. The only soft spot the Red Sox have is the bottom third of their lineup. The Tigers have more soft spots than that. To me, the only wildcard is Jon Lester. While he has been brilliant in stretches in 2013, the memories of 2012 and 2011 linger for me. If I was to put him head to head with Anibal Sanchez, who goes for the Tigers, I would always pick Lester. So I have to stick with that. Add in 35,000 screaming Boston fans and I go with the Red Sox
Post Season: 15-7