Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The wait is over! Here are my World Series predictions

Phillie Phanatic, you're going down. Rocky, you too. And Michael Vick, stop barking!

For the next week or so, Philadelphia is enemy territory. Until this series, I didn't really have anything against the city, or the Phillies - after all, the team makes Met fan Squawker Jon miserable, and that always warms my heart. And, as I wrote last month, I think the bad rep Philly fans have is both overblown and a little unfair. There are good fans and not-so-good fans in each and every fanbase. (Speaking of which, can we vote Artie Lange out of Yankee Universe? You could fit what he knows about the Yankees in a thimble. This is the clown who actually told Bill Simmons that the 1978 Butch Hobson, who had 43(!) errors that year, was a better player than Alex Rodriguez.Good grief.)

I digress. I was looking forward to seeing one Philadelphia Phillie's return to the Bronx. After all, this player was part of the 2004 ALCS, and Yankee fans need to get revenge on him. He has a lot to answer for.  But then Charlie Manuel left Miguel Cairo off the World Series roster. Bummer.

Anyhow, I'm one of the few Yankee fans who digs both Jimmy Rollins and Pedro Martinez - as I always say, I like players with larger-than-life personalities. (On the other hand, Shane Victorino gets on my last nerve. Go figure.) But they are the enemy this week. They're a tough team, but they haven't faced any team as tough as the Yankees yet.

Without further ado, here are my predictions:

* I see CC Sabathia as having an edge over Cliff Lee in Game 1.

* As for Game 2, I think Pedro Martinez will be fired up and wired up after the crowd gives him a Bronx cheer or two, and he'll outpitch A.J. Burnett. Why do I say this, even though the Yanks have smacked him around in recent years? Because he's a competitor who loves the drama. I would be very surprised to see Pedro do poorly. I think this game will be a walkoff win- the third Game 2 walkoff win in the postseason for the Yanks this year - with the Yankees smacking around Brad Lidge. Remember, Lidge got two blown saves off the Yankees this May.

* My guess is that the Yanks will only win, at most, one game in Philadelphia. And that will be whatever game Cole Hamels pitches.

* As for the rest of the series,  I'm going to agree with Jay-Z's prediction for how it will end:
I actually predicted the Yankees in six with the Angels, so I think I’m like Jigga the Greek. I’m gonna say, Phillies are a bit tougher than the Angels. I’m gonna take Yankees in seven. Dramatic A-Rod walk-off at the end of the game redeeming him for all the time the papers and the media vilified him. Is that specific enough?
* Needless to say, given that prediction, A-Rod is my prediction for theWorld Series MVP.

Here are some of my other predictions:

* Whatever reception Michelle Obama gets after throwing out the first pitch at Game 1 will be a super-big story. Another story will be people griping about the super-strict security. (Not exactly going out on a limb here, I know.)

* The Phillie Phanatic will do something controversial against the Yankees. (Incidentally, what kind of animal is the Phanatic, anyway? Is he like Gonzo or something?)

* Shane Victorino will be a thorn in the side of the Yankees, while Johnny Damon will be the same against the Phillies.

* Sleeper pick of a breakout Yankee World Series star? Dave Robertson.

* And finally, chances that this series will be an all-tiime classic? Excellent!

What are your predictions? Tell us about it!


Fred Garvin said...

Lisa said:

"I see CC Sabathia as having an edge over Cliff Lee in Game 1."

NOT!!!! (Given that CC and Lee came from the same Indians team, you gotta wonder what went wrong for that organization).

Watching the Yankees lose is really enjoyable!

Here's hoping that Pedro pitches like the 1999 Pedro!!!

Lisa Swan said...

I was just saying on Facebook about how nothing brings out my Red Sox/Mets/Phillies readers/friends like a bad game. And there you are! Haven't seen you post in ages!

Fred Garvin said...

Lisa, you're right! I've had to suffer through Yankee fan gloating on sports talk radio over the past few weeks (except when the lost, of course). So I figure I should return the favor even though I know the Yankees will ultimately prevail.

The next best thing to a RS win is a Yankees loss!

Fred Garvin said...

Lisa wrote: "Haven't seen you post in ages!"

Hi Lisa,

I've been out-of-action for health reasons but things are getting better. I will be back to normal for the 2010 season.

Uncle Mike said...

This wasn't as hard to take because the Yankees were never really in it. Michelle Obama and the Bidens were never in danger simply because Cliff Lee was shutting down all guns.

But I did some checking, keeping in mind that there have been 3 tie games in World Series play, all called due to darkness, and all well before most parks put up lights; and that 4 Series -- 1903, 1919, 1920 and 1921 -- were best-5-out-of-9, not best-4-out-of-7, so now you know how it is possible for a team to lose Game 7 and still win the Series, though it hasn't happened since 1919.

The team that wins Game 1 has won the Series 63 times, lost it 39, and there's been one tie. Cancelling out the ties, the winning percentage of the team that wins Game 1 is .618.

The team that wins Game 2 is 66-36, with 2 ties, for .647. Game 3, 70-34, .673. Game 4, 77-27, .740. Game 5, 61-27, .693. Game 6, 42-15, .737. Game 7, 35-2 -- 32-0 since the last 5-of-9 Series.

Based on this, Game 1 is actually the least critical game in the Series. A team losing Game 1 but winning Game 2 is 28-24, or .538. That doesn't sound bad at all. So maybe it doesn't make that much of a difference.

But it sure puts a lot of pressure on 2 guys tonight: A.J. Burnett and Alex Rodriguez. If A.J. doesn't pitch well, this Series might just be over in 5 as Jimmy Rollins predicted. And if A-Rod doesn't get his first of several Series hits and his first of several Series RBIs, the rest of the lineup won't fall into place and the runs won't score.

So there it is: Game 2, A.J. Burnett against... Pedro Martinez. I'd say, "Let's get ready to rumble," but Pedro the Punk might take that literally.

Time to unload the lumber. That means you, Number 13. And everybody else, too.

Paul from Boston said...

In my defense, I posted on your page after Rollins made an unimpressive first out to start the game - I was probably more sure than anyone that the Phillies were still going to blow it even when it was 4-0.

Although he labored more than he typically has to, CC pitched well. I think any team would gladly take his final line.

Given how close it was for so long it really made for a great game to watch - easier to watch with no hardcore rooting interest (yes, I'm rooting for the Phils, but it won't be devastating when the expected actually occurs).

Looking forward to tonight - should be entertaining. I expect the Yanks to knock Pedro around, but even if they don't he won't go the distance and the Philly bullpen should give NY ample opportunity.


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