My God, what a first round. There was a good game every single night. And because of that, some weird stuff happened. Thats what got us a Toronto-Cleveland ALCS.
Blue Jays vs. Indians
Toronto’s sweep of Texas wasn’t terribly surprising. Neither was the way it occurred. The Blue Jays walking off and/or being clutch in the postseason is no secret anymore. Toronto’s clutch capabilities are one of the biggest weapons in this postseason, and should scare even a bullpen as good as Cleveland’s.
The Indians bullpen is going to be key in this series. Cleveland’s rotation was surprisingly great in their sweep of Boston, but Toronto’s offense isn’t only one of the best in the league. They’re hot, unlike the Red Sox offense.
Cleveland’s rotation caught a break against Boston. The Red Sox main hitters were cold. In fact, close to none of Boston’s main contributions brought in runs in the ALDS. Sure, good players like Andrew Benintendi and Sandy Leon brought in runs, but Leon only had 35 RBIs on the year, and Benintendi, a prospect I love by the way, came up in August. These weren’t exactly Boston’s best players. Thats nothing against Leon and Benintendi, but Boston only got contributions from their top offensive threats in Game 3, when it was too late.
I really think, with Toronto hitting the way they are, and Cleveland’s rotation which I still don’t 100% trust, that the Blue Jays offense will carry them in this series.
The Indians rotations proved me wrong against Boston. But they hadhad a little bit of luck, and only sustained damage from Boston’s lesser contributors.
Cleveland’s bullpen will hold together, but I’m still not sure thats enough. The Blue Jays can rough up even the best relievers. Just ask Matt Bush and Texas.
As for the other matchup in this series, I believe Toronto has a good enough rotation to manage Cleveland’s offense. Its reliable and has quality starters, most of them with no questions to answer. Thats the opposite of Cleveland’s rotation. And its fair to say that Toronto’s lineup is much scarier than Cleveland’s.
The Blue Jays rotation also got their way through a very good Rangers lineup, that wasn’t in a slump, like Boston. Toronto pounded Cole Hamels and Yu Darvish, which was something no one saw coming, and is what determined the series.
That is what will determine this series. This Blue Jays lineup is ready to feast on Cleveland’s pitchers. Its only getting easier for them.
Well, at least until the World Series.
Prediction: Blue Jays in 5
Dodgers vs. Cubs
Los Angeles played an epic five game series against the Nationals to get this: A matchup against the best team in years for a trip to the World Series.
We can be journalistic about it and act the Dodgers can win this series, but common sense tells all. The Cubs are better than the Dodgers in every aspect.
Chicago has better hitters, a more reliable rotation, has better outfielders (At least, better than Josh Reddick.), and a much more talented bullpen. Kenley Jansen had a rough series, and thats not good considering he is LA’s best reliever. It got so bad that the Dodgers had to bring in Clayton Kershaw to save Game 5.
The Cubs had their fair share of bullpen troubles against San Francisco. Aroldis Chapman blew a save in Game 3, a game where other relievers like Travis Wood, Mike Montgomery, and Hector Rondon all gave up critical runs. But that was Chicago’s only real bullpen issue the whole series. That game was insane, and even though the Giants were eliminated and won’t win the World Series, its very possible that some of that #EvenYear magic made its appearance deep in that game.
However, just because the Cubs do have better players doesn’t mean the Dodgers’ players are bad. Clayton Kershaw is sure to give the Cubs trouble, and Rich Hill has pitched very well so far this postseason. That said, the Cubs won’t dominate this series, but they do have enough to advance.
Prediction: Cubs in 6