Major League Baseball playoff preview: In the postseason, pitching is pivotal

Major offseason need for every 2017 MLB non-playoff team

After a great regular season that featured extreme performances from both teams and individuals, Major League Baseball's postseason is shaping up as one of the most intriguing in years. Taking a stab at what it all looks like, let's get into it.

The American League won the interleague competition in 2017, and this marks the 14th consecutive year that it has earned that advantage over the Senior Circuit.

The AL West champion Houston Astros, who finished 101-61, host the AL East champion Boston Red Sox (93-69), with their ALDS also beginning on Thursday. They suffered heartbreaking defeats to the Marlins in 1997 and the Cubs previous year, and they also lost the 1995 World Series to the Atlanta Braves. The Minnesota Twins and Colorado Rockies, who have to win on the road to reach the division series, are tied with +2800 World Series odds. The NL Wild Card will be closer because D-backs' Greinke has been seesawing his performance in the postseason. I like Charlie Blackmon and Nolan Arenado to get to him early, and that gives Jon Gray an opportunity to settle in. Having a strong pitching staff can be key to a victory. It's due to their run, and the randomness of baseball, that we are going to guess they get bumped out early.

It will be a disappointment if the Indians don't return to the World Series. There's a lot of pressure on the Nationals with the impending free agency of Bryce Harper, and nothing yet to show for Max Scherzer's monster deal.

Over the full course of the season, there hasn't been a better team in baseball than the Dodgers.

So while the Cubs might be the underdogs, even as defending world champions, they go in feeling good.

PM: Sepang circuit will not be a white elephant after F1 race
Not a great day as you can imagine but the response from the whole team has been very positive. "The vehicle felt good". Valtteri Bottas , unable to overcome Mercedes problems in the way his team-mate did, will start a disappointed fifth.

Sports books don't see them as a good bet. Bullpens are underrated, and they can make a huge difference in the playoffs. The Red Sox might take a game from the Astros, but Houston wins in four. But of the top seeds in each league, Cleveland played better in the second half and has lights-out pitching on the front end through the likes of Corey Kluber and on the back end with Cody Allen and lefty Andrew Miller in the bullpen. When the 2014 Royals surged all the way from the play-in game to the World Series, the baseball world wondered whether the path to championship glory was to simply win enough to make the playoffs, then cross your fingers from there.

"You try to learn from stuff and move on", Francona said.

That whole best team in baseball once again rears its head. It's all about who gets hot, at the right time. Chicago can't match up consistently on the mound and I think that's where the deficiency lies.

The enigmatic Dodgers (13-17 since September 1) are looking for its first World Series appearance in 29 years, and its great ace, Clayton Kershaw, is trying to end his postseason problems, especially his haunted seventh innings. The Cubs put up more runs the LA during the regular season, but that offense should find it tough sledding to push runs across in bunches against this group. For the NCLS and the ALCS, the Cubs will beat the Diamondbacks and the Astros will actually beat the Indians. This is a series that features everything, and there's plenty of young stars on both sides of the diamond.

The history books tell us it was a shocking outcome 63 years ago, and shocking outcomes have occurred with regularity in the World Series. "As a club we feel like all those memories are very fresh, knowing how the postseason feels, and I think everybody's just really excited about the chance to get back into that same mode of thinking, that same adrenaline rush".

The National League has held its own for the last 20 years in the World Series, going 10-10 against the American League.

Related News:

  • Facebook to Give Russian Ads to Congress

    Facebook to Give Russian Ads to Congress

    The three committees, as well as Special Counsel Robert Mueller, are all now pursuing inquires on the alleged Russian meddling. Facebook's decision to give the ads to Congress means the pressure is now on lawmakers to release the ads to the public.
    Homecoming spoiled: Troy upsets No. 25 LSU in Death Valley

    Homecoming spoiled: Troy upsets No. 25 LSU in Death Valley

    Dave Aranda and Matt Canada get paid lots of money due to their reputations as being the best young coordinators in the country. The three players were integral parts of LSU's 28-21 upset of No. 1 Florida 20 years ago on October 11, 1997, in Tiger Stadium.
    After fast start, Cowboys limp to loss vs. Rams

    After fast start, Cowboys limp to loss vs. Rams

    No other team even has two wins (yet) in the division, showing that the Rams are starting to make a statement to their rivals. The inactives for Sunday's tilt against the Rams have been announced, and the Cowboys will be without their defensive leader.
  • Roku retrenches from huge IPO surge, -10.8%

    Roku retrenches from huge IPO surge, -10.8%

    Disclosure: I worked at CBS Interactive in 2014 and 2015, and some of my work involved CBS All Access and Star Trek: Discovery . Roku Inc . has proposed its platform as an alternative to traditional and more expensive subscriptions to cable TV.
    Man armed with knife stabs two people to death in France

    Man armed with knife stabs two people to death in France

    The station was evacuated amid a "major incident" after gunshots were heard and there is now a large police presence at the scene. Police declined to speculate about the motives of the killer, who attacked passers-by with a knife, according to local reports.

    Newcastle boss Rafa Benitez open to future return as Liverpool manager

    With two goals and two assists in the first three Premiership games this season, it seeme that Firminho's time had eventually come.
  • Didn't say no to Rahul Gandhi's visit: Amethi DM

    Didn't say no to Rahul Gandhi's visit: Amethi DM

    Congress sources said Shah's visit has been planned as a counter to Rahul's September 25-27 campaign in poll-bound Gujarat which rattled the saffron party.
    North Korea seen moving missiles from development center -- SouthKorean broadcaster

    North Korea seen moving missiles from development center -- SouthKorean broadcaster

    During his trip from 3 to 14 November, Trump will participate in a series of bilateral, multilateral and cultural engagements. The South Korean analyst also states North Korea retains about 10 submarine bases.
    Kevin Pietersen Belittles England's Ashes Squad, Gets Brutally Trolled

    Kevin Pietersen Belittles England's Ashes Squad, Gets Brutally Trolled

    Hales, who was present during the incident, returned to Bristol voluntarily on Tuesday to help police with their inquiries. Stokes has also been accused of mocking model, Katie Price's disabled son, Harvey , in a video that was leaked online.
  • Sharif to face indictment on Oct 9

    Sharif to face indictment on Oct 9

    The former prime minister appeared before the accountability court for the second time at judicial complex Islamabad . The general council of the PML-N will meet at the Convention Center today to elect Nawaz Sharif as the party chief.
    ((Free)) Eagles vs Chargers Live Stream Online

    ((Free)) Eagles vs Chargers Live Stream Online

    Rivers has 25 interceptions since the start of last season (19 games), however he has also managed to throw 37 touchdowns. This could (finally) be the week the Chargers' offense lives up to the considerable hype it amassed in the offseason.

    BLADE RUNNER 2049 Proves Sci-fi Spectacle Can Also Be Thoughtful

    Gosling's is an impressively internal performance, especially in a film where the external appears at first glance to reign. In a 2011 interview with EW, Cleopatra producer Scott Rudin said of Jolie, "It's only a movie with her [in it]".


Most liked

Monarch Airlines collapses, cancelling 300000 future bookings
Package holidays booked directly with Monarch Holidays are ATOL protected, meaning that a full refund will be issued. You can also message the Guardian on WhatsApp by adding the contact +44 (0) 7867825056.

Derek Carr injury poses short-term test of Raiders' resilience
Then, this preseason, his play was so poor I advocated for the Raiders to sign a quarterback off the street. Cam Newton also suffered the same type of fracture when he was in a auto accident in 2014.

Trump Attacks San Juan Mayor Who Criticized Hurricane Response
Budget director Mick Mulvaney says the public needs to "judge us by the actions, please" in terms of efforts to help Puerto Rico . And the USA military is working with Puerto Rican officials and the island's National Guard to reach those still cut off.

LSU Moves Their Momentum Down To #1 Florida
Two weeks ago Vanderbilt held the no. 1 defense in America, having allowed just 13 points through three games . The Commodores' lone win over the Gators since 1988 occurred in a 2013 visit to Gainesville.

Google to scrap contentious paywall policy
Paid news sites have long chafed at Google's decade-long requirement that they offer free access to at least three stories daily. News search results for sites with paid subscriptions will no longer be demoted in Google search , Bloomberg reported Sunday.

Yasir Shah Takes Five-for as Pakistan Chase 136 for Victory
Pakistan's chase started badly, losing wickets at 4, 7, 16 and 32 before limping to tea at 67-5, setting up a tense last session. At that point, Sri Lanka had their nose ahead in what was until then a race between tortoises and were looking at a handy lead.

Max Verstappen WINS Malaysian Grand Prix - Hamilton 2nd, Vettel 4th
Vettel, who's engine broke down at the end of the session and could not be replaced in time for a qualifying run. Race leader Verstappen reacted the next lap, taking the softs, too, and rejoining ahead of Hamilton.

Dalvin Cook limps off, Lions take lead over Vikings
Trailing 14-7, the Vikings drove to first-and-goal at the Detroit in the waning moments, looking for a chance to tie the game. The Detroit Lions celebrate a fumble recovery during their win over the Vikings on Sunday. 7-6 Vikings third quarter.

Iraq to halt worldwide flights to Kurdistan Region
Officials in Baghdad said the flights would resume if the central government received control of Kurdistan's airports. This is meant to be a response to the referendum "illegitimate" on the independence of iraqi Kurdistan.

One police officer killed, other wounded in Georgia shooting
Hearne was a detective with the Criminal Investigation Division of the Polk County Police Department. "It's a senseless killing". The other officer injured in the shooting was identified as David Goodrich, who's reportedly only been on the job for 6 months.

Air France flight with engine damage makes emergency landing
One of the plane's four engine had "serious damage", but no further details about the damages were released. The airline said it is working to reroute the passengers to Los Angeles.

Five Bayern players turned against Ancelotti, claims club president
Bayern Munich fired Carlo Ancelotti as coach on Thursday after the German team's heaviest Champions League group-stage defeat. He added, "Carlos is my friend and that will continue, but we had to take a professional decision for FC Bayern ".

How Westbrook's deal could shape the Thunder
The Thunder confirmed they had signed Westbrook to a multiyear extension in a news release Friday afternoon. Westbrook , the number four overall pick in the 2008 draft, beat out runner-up Harden to win MVP honors.

Nintendo's SNES Classic Edition Sells Out Instantly
It comes loaded with 20 plus classic Super NES games , including versions of Super Mario, the Legend of Zelda , and Donkey Kong. We sold out of our SNES Classic inventory within minutes in both our GameStop and ThinkGeek retail channels.

Presidents Cup 2017: Top Scores, Standings Review and Predictions for Saturday
Thomas holed his bunker shot for the Americans to stay 2 up, and Thomas birdied the next hole for a 3-up lead. Jordan Spieth and Patrick Reed are now 6-1-2 as a pair in the Ryder and Presidents Cups .