DLD Playoff Prediction Series: ALDS

With the American League divisional series set, our staff made their predictions on who they believe is moving on to the league championship. But first, let’s take a quick look at both matchups.

The Tampa Bay Rays (96-66) slugged their way past the A’s to take on the team with the best record in baseball, the Houston Astros (107-55). Obviously the Stros have home-field advantage, so they’ll host the first 2 games.

The Rays pitching staff leads the majors with a 25.3 fWAR. They have an unconventional way of pitching. They’ve been able to ride their bullpen to nearly 100 wins this whole season. The offense isn’t too shabby either with a weighted runs created plus of 102 that sits in the top 10 in baseball. The Astros are as formidable as they were in 2017. You can argue they’re even better. They boast one of the best rotations with 3 starters that sit in the top 2 in quality starts. The offense leads the majors in OPS and is 3rd in runs scored. The bullpen sits in the top 10 in MLB in fWAR. All this adds to a +280 run differential which is tops in baseball. You can look at this matchup as David vs Goliath.

The other series, aside from popular belief, is more evenly matched. The New York Yankees (103-59) will host the Minnesota Twins (101-61) for the first 2 games.

The Twins are a very well balanced team. The starting staff sits within the top 10 in fWAR and the bullpen in within the top 5. So, the pitching staff altogether can be considered elite. The offense is filled with sluggers. They set an MLB single-season record of 307 home runs. Add that with the 4th most doubles in baseball and they led all teams in extra-base hits. The Yankees strengths are their offense and bullpen. They hit 306 home runs, were 4th in extra-base hits and finished with the most runs scored in baseball. The bullpen held the second highest fWAR in baseball just behind the Rays. Their rotation didn’t fare so well as they sat just below average in fWAR. Though for most of the season, James Paxton was alone anchoring the rotation but with Luis Severino back and seemingly in full form, the rotation looks as strong as it’s ever had this season.

Prediction time. Here’s how the DLD team feels these series will end up.

Carole

Astros in 3 / Yankees in 5

Eric

Astros in 4 / Yankees in 4

Danielle

Astros in 5 / Yankees in 4

David

Astros in 3 / Yankees in 5

Mayra

Astros in 4 / Yankees in 5

Kevin

Rays in 5 / Yankees in 4

Oskar

Astros in 4 / Twins in 4

All but myself feel the Twins will be eliminated and all but Kevin believe the Astros will move on to the league championship series.

 

Oskar is a contributor to Dodgers-Lowdown. Follow him on Twitter @2rawsko94. You can follow the rest of the team that have Twitter accounts by clicking on their name.