Welcome to the American League Playoff Preview!
AL Wild Card
Kansas City Royals
Joe: The A’s posted a 10-16 record in September after going 11-18 record in August.
The Royals went 19-10 in August and 15-12 in September.
It’s Oakland’s Lester (16-11, 2.46) and Royals’ Shields (14-8, 3.21). Two good pitchers with maybe the edge going to Lester due to his ERA being about a run per game better than Shields.
The Royals went 5-2 against the Athletics this year, but both of their losses came against Lester.
Offense: KC: .262/.313/.376 with 95 HRs and A’s: .244/.320/.381 with 146 Hrs.
On a hunch I’ll pick KC with a 3-2 score.
Archie: Kansas City over Oakland
Steven: The A’s were my pick coming out of the All Star Break. But you cannot deny the fall out that they have encountered over the past month and a half. It took all 162 games for them just to clinch the final wild card berth. The Royals on the other hand have been one of the more consistent teams in baseball over the past few months. They are at home and are in the playoffs for the first time since 1985. Oakland’s saving grace may very well be that Jon Lester will be on the mound, and had posted a very good playoff record, and has pitched well against Kansas City.
I like Oakland in this game, 3-2
|AL DIVISION SERIES|
|Detroit Tigers||Vs||Baltimore Orioles|
Joe: Baltimore had some players not meet expectations including Chris Davis who more or less was a polar opposite from last year and wound up being suspended for using amphetamines. And, while their slash line, .257/.312/.423, was not the best in the AL their power numbers didn’t suffer all that much… Nelson Crux led the team with 40 HRs and was backed by Adam Jones (29) and Steve Pearce (21) and totaled 210 HRs as a team.
The pitching had no standout starter but they were all steady and as a team were right in the middle of the AL pack. They won’t dominant an opponent but they will keep Baltimore in the game until Cruz or some other hitter belts one out.
The Detroit Tigers are loaded offensively. Miguel Cabrera had a down year by his obscene standards, but he remains one of the most dangerous hitters in the postseason. Victor Martinez was six percentage points away from winning the AL batting title. J.D. Martinez is having a very good year. And, Ian Kinsler did just fine after coming over for Prince Fielder. The slash line: .277 (#1)/.331 (#2)/.427 (#2). with 155 HRs.
The starters are among one of the best staffs in MLB and are topped by Max Scherzer and followed by Rick Porcello, Justin Verlander and David Price. The only worry about Detroit is the bullpen. And, that’s the key… if the Orioles get to the Tigers’ bullpen as early as possible in the ALDS it could be all she wrote for the Bengals.
I’m not sure they can do it early or often enough to matter that much. Tigers over the O’s 4-3.
Archie: Detroit Tigers Over Baltimore Orioles
Steven: I am very intrigued by this matchup. The Orioles are coming off one of their best seasons in a very long time. The Tigers have struggled over the past couple of months, and have had to hold off the fiesty Royals the last month of the season. The Tigers have the pitching advantage, but the Orioles are very tough to beat at home, and the offense will shine.
I like Baltimore over Detroit 4 games to 3
|AL Divisional Round|
|Los Angeles Angels||VS||Kansas City Royals/
Joe: Los Angeles Angels didn’t win the AL West by 10-plus games by accident. Mike Trout is the best in baseball right now. Albert Pujols used to be the best but is still not too shabby for 34-year-old and Kole Calhoun has been contributing in a big way, too. Team slash line: .260/.323/.407 with 155 HRs.
They bolstered the bullpen by getting Huston Street and Jason Grilli. The starting rotation is headed by Jered Weaver (18-9, 3.59) and will be bolstered by the return of Matt Shoemaker. Honestly, if KC doesn’t pitch well… it’s over before it starts.
I’ll take the Angels 4-1
Archie: LA ANGELS OVER KANSAS CITY
Steven: The Angels are the hottest team in baseball, the three game sweep that they endured against Seattle means nothing to them, they have had time to rest their stars, and set their rotation. I like the Angels in this series 4 games to 1. I would not be surprised on a sweep here.
AMERICAN LEAGUE CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES
Joe: Angels vs Tigers
There’s no sense rehashing the stats so here is the prediction for the AL finals… Angels over the Tigers in an exciting nailbiter all the way to the end… 4-3
Archie: DETROIT OVER LA ANGELS
Steven: Los Angeles Angels vs Baltimore Orioles
Again, I would really look forward to this series if it happens. You have two great managers going up against each other. Neither team has had much post season success in recent years. This is going to come down to who wins the first road game. I give the slight edge to the Orioles here, and will pick them to win the American League pennant 4 games to 2
Stay Tuned for the NL
Tiny URL for this post: