First Day of the 2007 MLB Postseason

Wow, the first day of MLB postseason could not have started any better. I was still recovering from last week’s finish when Philadelphia Phillies won their final game of the season (with the Mets losing their final game) to win the NL East. I was also giddy watching the entire “play-in” game between the Colorado Rockies and the San Diego Padres on Monday night. When the bottom of the 13th inning rolled around in that game, I had a feeling in my gut that Trevor Hoffman was going to get rocked. And boy, did he get hammered. His seventh blown save of the season (the stats for this 163rd game of the season count!) cost his team the wild card. However, I do think he’s a solid closer and it just wasn’t Hoffman’s night.

Yesterday, I logged into MLB.com and took part in the bracket challenge. Here are my MLB postseason predictions:

NLDS

  • Colorado Rockies over Philadelphia Phillies in 4 games
  • Chicago Cubs over the Arizona Diamondbacks in 4 games

ALDS

  • New York Yankees over the Cleveland Indians in 5 games
  • Boston Red Sox over the Anaheim Angels in 5 games

NLCS

  • Chicago Cubs over the Colorado Rockies in 6 games

ALCS

  • Boston Red Sox over the New York Yankees in 6 games

World Series

  • Boston Red Sox over the Chicago Cubs in 5 games

So let’s get to today’s games. I watched all the games, with a few hours break for food. I was surprised at how well Jeff Francis pitched (6 IP, 8 K’s) against the Phillies today. Francis is probably the most underrated number one starter in MLB. Cole Hamels pitched well, but the Rockies got to him in the second inning, and that ended up making all the difference in the game.

In case you missed it, Josh Beckett is an ace. He was lights out today against the Angels, throwing a nine inning, four hit shutout. It was his third shutout in postseason play, which is very impressive. If the Red Sox go all the way this year, look for Josh Beckett to be a strong contender for the World Series MVP (he has already won this award in 2003 World Series when he was with the Florida Marlins). Said Terry Francona after the game, “He went out there and executed pitches, in my opinion, probably better than he has at any point of the season. He attacked the strike zone with all of his pitches — cut his fastball. He pounded the strike zone with three great pitches.” We’ll see how Dice-K fares against the potent Angels offense when he takes the mound in game 2.

The last game of the day, between the Diamondbacks and Cubs, featured Carlos Zambrano vs. Brandon Webb. To be fair, I no longer consider Zambrano to be the ace of the Cubs as he has been so inconsistent the entire regular season. He sort of settled down near the end of the season, but if you look at Zamrano’s gamelog for the entire season, you’ll notice that he never had an ERA below 3.40 the entire season; his performance in the last game of the season, where he gave up no runs in seven innings, allowed him to finish the regular season just a shade below 4.00 ERA. Leading up to this game, there was talk about how the Diamondbacks finished with such a great record, yet they allowed more runs than they scored. Well, they put up only three runs tonight, but it was enough to secure the victory with the way Webb pitched. Look for the Cubs to rebound in game 2, however, as the Diamondbacks have Doug Davis (13-12, 4.25 ERA) starting against Ted Lilly (15-8, 3.83 ERA).

Much more to come tomorrow!

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~ by mlb2007playoffs on October 4, 2007.

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