Friday, October 15, 2010

ALCS Prediction

This week I will give my predictions for the American League Championship Series between the Texas Rangers and the New York Yankees and for the NLCS.

ALCS:

Game 1: New York Yankees (CC Sabathia) @ Texas Rangers (CJ Wilson)

Winner – Texas Rangers
Analysis: CC Sabathia is perceived to be a good playoff pitcher, but, really, I don’t think that he is. In his career, he has had 11 postseason starts, and has an ERA of 4.41. He allowed 3 runs in 6 innings in his only start so far this postseason. In his playoff career, he has been lit up four different times and has dominated only three different times. When you’re getting lit up more than you’re dominating, and you’re an ace, I’d consider that bad pitching. Meanwhile, in CJ Wilson’s only playoff start, he went 6.1 innings, allowing no runs, and just four base-runners. One other note that should affect the whole series - the Yankees threw out a horrible 15% of base-stealers this season, while the Rangers have already stolen 6 bases this postseason. That’s a good sign.

Game 2: New York Yankees (Phil Hughes) @ Texas Rangers (Colby Lewis)

Winner – New York Yankees
Analysis: Despite having an 8.53 ERA last postseason, Phil Hughes has still had many good playoff outings, with a 1.59 postseason ERA in 2007, and seven shutout innings in his first career playoff start earlier this year. I could definitely see Phil Hughes struggling in this game, but I don’t think that it will happen that way. On the other side, Colby Lewis didn’t allow any runs in his first ever playoff appearance and allowed just two hits, but still didn’t do his job, because due to his five walks, he couldn’t even record an out in the sixth inning before getting pulled. I think the Rangers have a good chance in this one, but I see the Yankees recording the win.

Game 3: Texas Rangers (Cliff Lee) @ New York Yankees (Andy Pettite)

Winner – Texas Rangers
Analysis: The Rangers have Cliff Lee going in this game. That should be enough analysis for this prediction, but I’ll give some stats anyway. Cliff Lee is 6-0 with a 1.44 ERA, with 54 strikeouts and 6 walks in 56.1 career playoff innings. That’s pretty good. Yes, I realize that Andy Pettite has 19 career playoff wins, but that is more due to quantity than quality. Andy has a 3.87 postseason ERA in his career. Not bad, but when you have started in 41 playoff games, you’d be doing pretty bad if you didn’t have 19 wins, so I don’t put too much stock into that.

Game 4: Texas Rangers (Tommy Hunter) @ New York Yankees (AJ Burnett)

Winner – Texas Rangers
Analysis: Tommy struggled in his first playoff outing, going only 4 innings, and allowing 3 runs, 2 of them earned, and I don’t see him being all that great in this game either (maybe 6 or 7 innings with 3 or 4 runs allowed). But with AJ Burnett going for the Yankees, that should be enough to pick up the victory. Burnett went 10-15 with a 5.26 ERA for the Yanks this year, and looked even worse than that. Not to mention that his postseason ERA last year was just about the same at 5.27. That’s awful, and I don’t see those numbers changing in this one.

Game 5: Texas Rangers (CJ Wilson) @ New York Yankees (CC Sabathia)

Winner – Texas Rangers
Analysis: Once again, CC’s career playoff stats are not very good, with a 4.41 career playoff ERA, and he finished off the season with a 4.11 ERA in the year’s final 30 games. That’s worrisome for Yankees fans, and great for Rangers fans. And that’s not to mention CJ Wilson’s road ERA this season. On the road this year, CJ had a 2.91 ERA. That’s incredible, and not only has he proven that he’s a good road pitcher during the regular season, but he’s done that in the postseason, too, as his first start in the playoffs was on the road in Tampa, so I don’t see why that would change now.

Prediction: Texas Rangers 4, New York Yankees 1

NLCS:

Prediction: Philadelphia Phillies 4, San Francisco Giants 3

Come back next week for World Series predictions, which will hopefully include the Rangers.

4 comments:

Ticketwood said...

The Yankees have yet the play the first game and they’re already down 0-3. As a Mets fans, tells us again how the Mets were going to win the World Series this year. New York Yankees tickets will go high sky. 28th title just 8 wins away.

EMC said...

Grant -

I hope you are right. I went to Friday's game and in spite of the score - it was an amazing atmosphere. So glad they came back strong on Saturday -- Cliff Lee on Monday! Go Rangers!

Eleanor

Lynn Leaming said...

Grant,
Looks like they are one away from your predction of 4-1 being true. I am hoping that their biggest fan of all has his dream come true!! Miss that sweet smile of yours!

grantlovesbaseball said...

Hi Eleanor,

Yeah, Friday's atmosphere was definitely great, especially after they went up 5-1. Saturday's atmosphere was great, too. I'm glad you got to go to a game.

Hi Ms. Lynn,

My prediction only ended up being one game off, but I'll still take a 6-game series win. I can't believe that they're going to the World Series. This is great. I'm really missing seeing you every Sunday at church, Ms. Lynn. I hope everything is still going well at your new place.

Grant