Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Fearless Forecast: Cloudy, With A Chance Of Accuracy

2007 Postseason Prognostications

I'm not the predicting type, normally. My last greatest call was Gerry Cooney KO-ing Ken Norton in under a minute of the first round back in 1981 (I predicted the fight would last 58 seconds; it lasted 54). Seriously. I'm Jimmy The Anti-Greek. Or maybe I'm Jimmy the Geek. Whatever.

But in the spirit of good humor, if nothing else, here's a look at how the 2007 MLB playoffs might go -- if we lived in a world where I was ever right about such things:

American League

New York vs. Cleveland: It's tempting to just look at the Yankees' 6-0 record against the Tribe in '07 and say that means a win in the ALDS, too. But we all know that today's game is tomorrow's momentum, and regular season matchups usually mean little. Yet, having said that, I'll still take the Yankees in four because I think they're due for a postseason explosion, and I believe the loss to the Tigers last year got under their skin more than poison ivy.

Los Angeles vs. Boston. Intriguing matchup. Two teams that recently ended being vexed (Angels in 2002; Red Sox in 2004) for years. And the Red Sox eliminated the Angels in 2004. But I look at the Red Sox and their resilience in fending off the Yankees, and their desire to make amends for their awful '05 postseason and '06 absence, and I like Boston in five.

National League

Colorado vs. Philadelphia. Wow. How do you handicap this one? Both teams qualified thanks to miraculous comebacks. The Phillies finished 13-4 to overtake the Mets. The Rockies sprinted to the finish 13-1 to leapfrog the Dodgers and the Padres. Both teams will be riding high emotions, but that usually dissipates after the first game. I guess I'll go with the Phillies in five, mainly because I like their overall team strength and their pitching is a tad better.

Chicago vs. Arizona. Another difficult series to pick, because neither team has any playoff success to brag about in the last, oh, 95 years or so. (I know, the Diamondbacks haven't been around that long, so chill). The Cubs' regular season record wasn't all that impressive (the Tigers would have won this division handily), but neither was that of the '06 Cardinals, and they won the whole enchilada. As much as I hope I'm wrong, I'm sticking with the Diamondbacks in four. Why? pitching, and there's a reason the D-backs won 90 games and the Cubs fell far short of that. They're the better team.

So that's all, folks. Oh -- and this time I'm picking Cooney over Norton in 22 seconds. Fighters lose a lot of stamina in their 50s and 60s, after all.

Coming Friday: My slightly warped end-of-season awards!


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