MLB Playoffs

by Ryan Penta

It’s fall, which means one thing: MLB playoffs. Tuesday October 3, 2017 kicked off the beginning of the postseason. It was a wildcard matchup in New York that put the Minnesota Twins against the New York Yankees.

The wildcard round is just one game, so it’s a winner-take-all series. The Yankees came out on top with an 8-4 win.

The next night, the Colorado Rockies traveled to Arizona and faced the Diamondbacks, with the D-backs prevailing 11-8.

Next came the divisional round, called the ALDS and NLDS for the American and National Leagues, respectively. For the American League, the Boston Red Sox faced the Houston Astros in a best of five game series. Houston jumped out to a 2-0 series lead and was looking for a sweep when the Red Sox showed some life in Game 3, winning in a blowout 10-3. The Astros were able to put them down in Game 4, winning 5-4 and winning the series 3-1.

The New York Yankees moved on to the  Cleveland Indians. The Indians jumped out to a 2-0 lead and looked to sweep just like the Astros. Then disaster struck for them– they lost the next three games, blowing the series and being knocked out of the playoffs.

In the National League, the Arizona Diamondbacks were pitted against the LA Dodgers. The Diamondbacks proved to be no match for the Dodgers whatsoever, the Dodgers swept them winning 9-5, 8-5, and 3-1 in Games 1, 2, and 3, respectively.

The Chicago Cubs, last year’s World Series champs, faced off against the Washington Nationals in the country’s capital. This series was a thriller to watch as it went all five games to decide the winner. Ultimately, the Cubs prevailed in Game 5, winning 9-8 in a close matchup against a very physical Nationals team.

The final round before the World Series, a seven game series, started on Friday, October 13th, and featuredthe underdog Yankees versus the 101-win Houston Astros. This was supposed to be an easy match up for the Astros; however, the Yankees put up a fight. The Astros were able to force a Game 7 after going down 3-2 in the series. The Astros won 4-0 sending themselves to their first World Series since 2005.

The National League saw the Dodgers face-off against the 92-win Chicago Cubs. The Dodgers jumped out to a 3-0 series lead looking for their second sweep in the postseason. Game 4 seemed to give the Cubs life, winning 3-2 and forcing Game 5. In Game 5, the Dodgers offense went off, scoring 11 runs, the most their team has scored in the postseason thus far. The final score was 11-1 in favor of the Dodgers.

The 2017 World Series matchup was the Houston Astros versus the Los Angeles Dodgers. On October 26, 2017, the Dodgers were slight favorites to win with 3/2 odds compared to Houston’s 2/1 odds.

Former Journalism I students Brian Hines and Jed Fein gave their input about the World Series matchup. Hines stated, “I think the Dodgers will win because they have a better pitching rotation and deeper lineup than the Astros.”

Jed Fein differed greatly from Brian saying, “I think the Astros will win because in my opinion the Red Sox were the best team and the Astros beat them.”

Senior Matt Mearn was asked about the matchup and his response, “The Astros all the way. Altuve is the best player in the league right now and their offensive firepower will be too much for the Dodgers pitching rotation.”

The series was very even because neither team held more than a one game lead in the series. Along with that, the biggest win was a mere four runs. Ultimately, the Dodgers went on a three-game winning series to force a Game 7 but fell short.

There was never a game without action, as three home run records were either tied or broken. The Astro’s George Springer hit for an MLB record tying five home runs in the series, both teams had a combined 14 players who hit at least one home run, and 25 total home runs hit between the two ball teams.

This ended up being one of the more memorable World Series since it was the first World Series win for Astro’s as an organization, even after 56 years in the league. It was just as memorable as last year’s Cubs winning for the first time in over 100 years, or when the 2004 World Series when the Red Sox won and ended the curse of the Great Bambino after 86 years.

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