MLB: World Series Preview

Clayton+Kershaw+pitches+to+the+Houston+Astros+during+game+1+of+the+World+Series.+
Clayton Kershaw pitches to the Houston Astros during game 1 of the World Series.

Clayton Kershaw pitches to the Houston Astros during game 1 of the World Series.

Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Clayton Kershaw pitches to the Houston Astros during game 1 of the World Series.

Noah Bieniek, Senior Writer

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In the 2017 World Series the 4-7 game bout is between the home run hitting Houston Astros, and the “Big Blue” Los Angeles Dodgers with their big bullpen. This series will be HOT and I mean it, Game 1 in LA is expected to have +100-degree temperature around first pitch. Both teams respectively have accumulated +100 wins this season also. And my favorite thing to look forward to in this series is to be able to watch all these young guys to play in the Fall Classic.

Houston is the underdog in the series mainly because they are a small market team and their payroll cannot be compared with Los Angeles’s, but expect their starting pitching and their great hitting to help them this postseason. The Astros have been beyond bad for so long arguably since 2007 and back in 2011-2013 they posted three consecutive seasons with over 105 losses. To put that into perspective for non-baseball fans, there are only 162 games in a season, yikes. But during those seasons they were rebuilding, working towards this dynasty that they have now.

To the casual fan they might say what the Dodgers and the Astros? When did the Astros move to the American League? Well your answer is in 2013 and that was just to even out the leagues and make them both have 15 teams, instead of having (NL-16 AL-14).

What really has created some wows about this Houston team, is that back in 2015 the magazine Sports Illustrated predicted on the cover of one of their magazines, “Your 2017 World Series Champion is… The Houston Astros.” Crazy, Right? But what has seriously brought this team together was the hurricane back in August. Hurricane Harvey destroyed the city of Houston, and as a result the city has rallied behind the Astros, and the Astros are playing for the city. The team was propelled by a last minute “Minute Maid” trade with the Detroit Tigers to pick up an experienced pitcher in the postseason who has really put the team on his back. Since he has been an Astro and currently owns an undefeated record wearing the White, Orange, and Blue for Houston.

Players to Pay Attention to this series:

Dallas Keuchel- He’s pitched great for the Astros this postseason with a record of 2-1, with 2
quality starts. He has pitched 17.1 innings, he’s given up 5 runs, with 25 strikeouts and owns a 2.60 ERA.

Justin Verlander-
Verlander has been amazing posting a 4-0 record, and an ERA of 1.46 in the
postseason this year. He has only given up 4 runs and a total of 24 strikeouts
in 24.2 innings.

Jose Altuve- Kind of obvious,
right? For those who don’t know he 5 feet 6 inches tall. Nope I didn’t mistype,
he is small but he packs a punch. In 11 games, this postseason Altuve has had 16
hits 5 home runs, 8 RBIs and has a whopping .400 batting average how can you
not include him.

Sleeper: Alex Bregman-
Bregman has had a considerably rough postseason but expect him to be the unsung hero in the World Series for the Houston Astros.

As for the Dodgers, they are the favorites to win the series based on their market and lead by their amazing bullpen who have been lights out this postseason.

The Dodgers throughout the year were the most hyped up team who basically had their playoff spot clinched at the All-Star break. Led by their young guns in the regular season especially rookie sensation and Shoe-in for NL Rookie of the Year Cody Bellinger who finished with 39 homers.

The Dodgers bullpen has been stellar throughout the year and they’ve just kept rolling in the postseason so far. 25 innings into the Postseason, the Dodgers bullpen checked in at less than .60 of a collective ERA which is insane. If you are one who looks at bullpens, you’ll be leaning towards the Dodgers in this series.

The Dodgers big move during the season was picking up Yu Darvish at the trade deadline, which only strengthened an already good starting rotation. Darvish has pitched outstanding in two games for the Dodgers, going 2-0 two starts, with a 1.59 ERA. Darvish has pitched a total of 11.1 innings, and owns 14 strikeouts to his name this postseason.

Players to Pay Attention to on the Dodgers

Clayton Kershaw –
Kershaw is truly a regular season stud, but has a history of Postseason
struggles. This year Kershaw has pitched in 3 games, owning a 2-0 record. He’s
pitched 17 innings in those 3 games and currently holds a 3.63 ERA and has 16
strikeouts. Look for Kershaw to step up his Postseason game in the playoffs.

Justin Turner: Turner is
a playoff monster he currently holds .482 On Base Percentage in Postseason
games and was the CO-MVP of the NLCS expect him to stay hot.

Chris Taylor: Where did
this guy come from? One year before this historical run by the Dodgers Taylor
had never played Centerfield before. He’s been consistent in the Postseason
this year and was also CO-MVP of the NLCS with Justin Turner.

Sleeper: Corey Seager –
It would be a perfect story. Seager missed the NL Championship game with an
injured back, and if he were to come back from injury and play outstanding in
the World Series someone could say Kirk Gibson(esk). Just Saying

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