Division Series Matchup Breakdown

The playoffs. They're happening!!!

The best time of the year is upon us, folks. It’s time for the Major League Baseball playoffs. Where anything can happen. A pitcher hit a triple yesterday. There are no rules. Mostly. There are mostly no rules.

The matchups for the Division Series this year are phenomenal. We’re looking at titanic showdowns on every side of the country this year. And our world class reporting is here to give you all the info you need about everything you need to know about every fine factor of every player of every team of every series of the Division Series that is going on this year.

Alright, no more beating around the bush. Let’s get to the dirty details, people.

Astros vs. Red Sox

The first duo we are going to inspect is the series between the Astros and the Red Sox. There are way too many good players on both sides of the ball for both of these teams and it makes us wonder: Is there a government conspiracy happening? You never know. NASA is in Houston, ya know.

Okay, the Red Sox. They’re like really good and stuff.

The pitching is plenty enough to get you through the playoffs. Chris Sale is – I mean, do we really have to explain? It’s Chris freaking Sale. For one thing, the guy turns David Price into a clear #2 and he’s an ace among aces. And we’re just not going to say any more about Sale because you just don’t get it at this point. Back to Price, he’s a legend. He’s an ultra-competitor and you know he’s going to show up and throw one or two great games this series. From there, the Bostoneers only need one of Fister, Pomeranz, or Porcello to show up and they’re onto the next round. The bullpen is utterly stacked (Joe Kelly actually throws 1000 mph) so now problems there. So we’re just going to say the Red Sox have that side of the ball covered.

The lineup is insane, too. Hanley, Benintendi, Betts, Pedroia, Devers, Bogaerts, Mitch Moreland for some classy, swaggy lefty pop. Say no more, fam. These guys will score enough runs to win games. That’s all it takes for the Sox to have this thing in the bag.

Fooled you again, nerd. They’re playing the Astros. These guys are awesome at playing baseball.

Verlander is the obvious strength here. He’s got the playoff experience, the stuff, and the competitiveness to will the Astros into a couple of W’s on his starts. So, the Astros just need a decent start out of someone else and they are punching a ticket to the next round. The bullpen, led by Luke Gregerson, is plenty enough to get the job done to finish wins. That was easy.

But the real strength here is the offense. Altuve, Springer, Reddick, Beltran, Bregman, and Correa can probably swing the doors off of anybody that any other playoff team can roll out there. But there’s more depth than that. Marwin Gonzalez doesn’t get enough attention for what he does. And the journeyman Yuli Gurriel hit just under .299 during the 2017 regular season campaign. We think the catching core of McCann and Gattis can come up in some key spots and give the ‘Stros exactly what they need in key situations, too. Don’t sleep on the Astros. Because they will rain down on you from the sky with the might of one thousand meteors.

“Okay, so who is going to win, Korked?” Ah, a very interesting question, indeed. You see a wise man once said that predictions in baseball can be a very difficult thing to do in baseball. Another wise man also told a story about a man in a ship that never came home many, many moons ago. This story is called The Odyssey and it goes a little something like this. Eons ago sailed a great man by the name of….

Yankees vs. Indians

Oh, man, do we like this one. This thing could be seriously exciting. I mean, this thing could be a barnburner won by the thinnest of margins for five games straight. There’s potential for pitcher’s duels and absolute shootouts all the same. Let’s take a nice, little gander here.

The Clevelanders. They’re thirsty, brother. And they can play.

The Tribe is going to start off their October adventure with Trevor Bauer. He’s got some serious ability to shove an absolute gem down the throats of the Yankees during Game 1. But we have also seen him give in when things start to against him. Be heads up for that in his starts. But Kluber is as solid as they come and the Indians are going to get two starts out of him, if they need it, and that’s huge. The Indians are going to start games strong, but will they finish? Yes, said Korked, to the unknown reader. We all know the legend of Andrew Miller at this point. And Cody Allen and Mike Clevinger are going to show up and be big for the Indians this series. Believe the hype!

As far as the position guys go, there’s a lot of talent to go around too. The infield is going to show up and play for the boys. Lindor is a freak and Jose Ramirez can be really special. Carlos Santana will do his thing and Kipnis, who had a down year, in our opinion, is going to come to the playoffs and ball out. Around the outfield, things like nicely for these guys, too. Chisenhall is classic, Bruce can get hot, and Brantley can be consistent. You know Cleveland would have loved to get Zimmer out onto the field for his first bit of playoff action but things happen. And did you really think we were going to forget about Edwin Encarnacion?!

Oh, and then there’s the Yankees. How did they even make it to the playoffs? They’re so bad. (No, I’m not being sarcastic.) (Of course, I’m being sarcastic, ya numbskull.)

If you have a pulse, you better have watched the ALWC game. Because that was amazing. And it put on display exactly what we need to talk about with the Yankees pitching. It’s really good. We know what happened with Severino. Just ignore it. Honestly. That means Severino, Tanaka, and Sonny Gray are going to be your three guys to ride in the playoffs? Love that. And, well, the bullpen is nails. Don’t give these guys a lead. That’s all there is to say.

Okay, and the offense is just as formidable. Where do we start, oh, with Aaron Judge, duh. Bold prediction of the day: He’s going to hit a home run in every single playoff game this year. Even the ones that the Yankees aren’t even playing in. Gary Sanchez is scary, too. Castro, Frazier, Gregorious, and Gardner round out the lineup to give you something that just really isn’t fun to face. Actual bold prediction of the day, though? The Yankees lineup is a little too top heavy for the pitching that you see in the playoffs. If they can’t get production out of Judge and Sanchez, they might see an early exit out of the dance.

Which brings us to our prophecy for the winner of the series. Well, this is an easy one. Ya know what it’s practically as easy as? Eating a whole pizza from Antonino’s in New York. I mean, get real with whoever the cook is back there. Cleveland has great pizza, too, though, have you ever been to Tony’s Pizza Spot? Dude, you’re missing out, so they do this thing with their dough…

Cubs vs. Nationals

This series is going to be the one that we watch most closely. The star power involved in this sucker, my goodness. We’re going to need a breathalyzer and a defibrillator because we’re going to enjoy watching this series way too much.

Let’s inspect what the Cubbies have going on first. They are the incumbents, after all.

Arrieta, Lester, Lackey, Hendricks, Quintana. That’s all that needs to be said there. Moving on. Wade Davis, Carl Edwards, Jr, Pedro Strop, Brian Duensing. Well, then. That was really easy. Clearly, these guys are going to give up zero runs this entire series.

Now let’s get to the interesting part. The lineup. While Heyward and Schwarber are the stars out there, they aren’t going to be the ones that we’re counting on to bolster the Cubs’ offense. For us, it’s going to be Jon Jay and Almora, Jr., who both hit .298 this year. That’s not to say that Heyward or Schwarber can’t catch lightning in a bottle this postseason and be dope but we’re not expecting it. The infield is where the cubs are excellent. Bryant, Rizzo, and Baez are the anchors but we’re looking for Zobrist to do his classic thing and come up in a big spot and do something nice. Willson Contreras can also give you something you’re not expecting but happy to see if you’re a Cub fan. Look for runs and lots of them out of this lineup.

Buuuuuuuuuuut, they’ve got luck having to face the Nationals. These guys are scary good.

Scherzer, Strasburg, Gio. Smell ya later. “Yeah, but what about the bullpen?!” Doolittle, Madson, Albers. Maybe not the household names that the starting trio we named are but two of those three guys have ERA’s in the ones. Good luck. The entire pitching staff over the course of the entire year posted a 3.88 ERA. That’s nasty. And then you count in the fact that this is the playoffs and you are only going to see the studs? Eesh.

But will they score runs? You would have to think so. Daniel Murphy, Anthony Rendon, and RYAN FREAKING ZIMMERMAN are going to get it done around the infield, you better believe it. And they really don’t have anyone good in the outfield so that’s fine, we guess. Ha! Bryce Harper, Jayson Werth, Howie Kendrick, and Michael Taylor all have pop to mix in some big probability for scoring a bunch of runs all at once. Watch out, Cubs pitchers, these dudes mean business.

Alright, prediction time! Yes, yes, it is that time. Time. Man, when you really think about time, it’s just so crazy, man. Like, what even is time, really? Have you ever thought about that? How is it that now and now and now and now are like all different times every time you read that word? And then now and now and…

Diamondbacks vs. Dodgers

Time for the last, but, of course, certainly not the least, series in the Division Series round. I mean, the NL West is a reaaaaally interesting division, am I right? Pfft. Two teams from the NL West in one series would have me begging for sleep. Except not really because these two are so cool.

We’re going to start with the Diamondbacks because we are still so pumped off of yesterday’s excitement. That baby was smokin’-okin’.

So, by now you have figured out I’m starting this drill off with the starters. This is where the Diamondbacks just can’t make it, huh, because after Greinke, their starting pitching just doesn’t have enough, huh? Haha, yeah. WRONG. Robbie Ray actually threw to a 2.89 ERA this year. Put that in your pipe and smoke it. And Zack Godley was, well, godly, with his own 3.37 ERA. So, the starters are just fine. Fernando Rodney just won’t stop doing that stupid arrow thing – or turning his hat even close to the usual spot on a human being’s head. And then the story of Archie Bradley is being written right before our eyes. Take it from us, folks, the Diamondbacks staff is serious.

But the real strength here is the offense. Let’s start off with the obvious. Paul Goldschmidt is not of this world. .297 with 36 jimmies? Get out of town. And while Jack Lamb didn’t hit for as good of an average as we would expect he would, he still has some nice power from the left side. A.J. Pollock brings you some dynamic action with his speed and David Peralta will do his part just as well. They’ve also got…Oh, jeez, we’re nervous to even say his name. We’re afraid he’ll think we are a baseball and hit us 485927348 feet. But we will do it for you, our readers. Someone else who is really good for the Diamondbacks is – J.D. Martinez!? Ahhhhh!...Oh, we’re fine.

But just because the Diamondbacks are all that in a bag of chips doesn’t mean they will just get to walk right into the NLCS. They have to get through the Dodgers first and that’s no small task.

Let’s just get right to it: Yes, Clayton Kershaw has struggled in the playoffs before. We know. But he is an ace among aces and he is due to dominate. We’re putting our money on him every day of the week. After him Yu Darvish is absurdly good and then Rich Hill can get you the last win easily. And the bullpen is really cleaned up after a few down years. Kenley Jansen was always so good but the emergence of Brandon Morrow and Tony Watson have been huge for the Dodgers. Look for them to play pivotal roles in this series.

And then, of course, we all know about the dodger lineup. It’s difficult to fathom, honestly. Who put Dodger uniforms on all these all-stars and convinced everyone they are on the same team? Cody Bellinger is going to get his first taste of playoff action and we’re willing to bet will be marvelous. Justin Turner is going to do Justin Turner stuff. Yasiel Puig could unleash his potential if he gets hot. And Curtis Granderson is going to hit about as professionally as any person can. So, I mean, yeah, the Dodgers have a good lineup, I guess. Nonono, wait, it’s SO good.

To end this article, we’re going to give you our scholarly effort at an extrapolation on this NL West showdown. What, we are! Seriously, if you were to take an integral of a derivative of the quotient of the probability under a curve divided into the likelihood that Korked sells awesome shirts, you would find that the Lumoxberg variable cross-sectionalized with a median remainder’s summation concludes that the numerical product of a benefactorial deescalating…

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