The 2021 World Series is determined. The Houston Astros and Atlanta Braves will meet in this year’s Drop Traditional after knocking off the Purple Sox and Dodgers in six games in the League Championship Series, respectively. The World Series will originate Tuesday night at Minute Maid Park in Houston.
Thanks to all these years the Astros spent in the National League, these two golf equipment cease bear rather comparatively of postseason history. Here’s a short recap of these Astros vs. Braves postseason battles:
- 1997 NLDS: Braves sweep 3-0
- 1999 NLDS: Braves take 3-1
- 2001 NLDS: Braves sweep 3-0
- 2004 NLDS: Astros take 3-2
- 2005 NLDS: Astros take 3-1
Clearly, what came about in the late 1990s and early-to-mid 2000s has no regarding what happens in 2021. These sequence had been an eternity ago in baseball years. There are different gamers now, different managers, different forms of play, the works. The Astros and Braves bear a postseason history, sure, nonetheless it’s irrelevant to the 2021 World Series.
Anyway, with the World Series keep to originate Tuesday night, let’s lay out some valorous predictions. Near with me, may perhaps maybe merely no longer you?
There’ll possible be a chaos sport
Perchance this valorous prediction would no longer qualify as valorous, because there appears to be no longer less than one chaos sport every World Series. What cease I mean by chaos sport? I mean hundreds offense and lead changes, memorable performs, and merely all-around entertainment. The opposite of a pitchers’ duel, essentially. Some contemporary World Series chaos sport examples:
- 2020 World Series Sport 4: The Brett Phillips sport
- 2019 World Series Sport 7: The Howie Kendrick sport
- 2017 World Series Sport 5: Astros beat Dodgers 13-12 in 10 innings
- 2016 World Series Sport 7: *gestures at the whole lot*
The 2018 World Series didn’t bear a staunch chaos sport, even though it did bear an 18-inning sport, the longest World Series in history, and that’s the reason a pleasing merely exchange. Level is, nearly about every World Series we can count on to examine one genuinely chaotic sport with a ton of action and lead changes and a memorable cease.
So, predicting a chaos sport in this year’s World Series will not be any longer essentially valorous, nonetheless I’m going to foretell one anyway. Buy into consideration this more of a hope than a prediction. Give me a crazy relieve-and-forth sport. To be comparatively of explicit with this prediction, I’m going to inform Sport 5 is our chaos sport, and we stare 23 total runs scored and eight mixed home runs. Plug mountainous or scuttle home, toddler.
Tucker will keep the World Series stolen wicked file
That is the postseason of the stolen wicked. Thru the League Championship Series, runners are 38 for 42 — 38 for 42! — stealing bases, an amazing 90 p.c success fee. Knowing to be one of the four caught stealing wasn’t even an valid caught stealing both. Rays outfielder Manuel Margot overslid the accept in ALDS Sport 3. He made it safely. He merely slid too some distance.
The Astros had been no longer a stolen wicked team at some stage in the frequent season. They stole splendid 53 bases, the fourth fewest in baseball, and their stolen wicked leader modified into traded at the closing date (Myles Straw with 17). Houston will not be any longer going to wreak havoc on the bases, nonetheless because these are valorous predictions, I’m going to inform an Astros items a contemporary World Series stolen wicked file.
The player: Kyle Tucker. Jose Altuve may perhaps maybe merely seem cherish the more evident preference, nonetheless he’s no longer any longer principal of a stolen wicked threat anymore (splendid five steals in 2021), and Tucker went 14 for 16 stealing bases at some stage in the frequent season. The World Series stolen wicked file is seven, accomplished twice by a Hall of Famer:
- Lou Brock, Cardinals: 7 steals vs. Purple Sox (1967 World Series)
- Lou Brock, Cardinals: 7 steals vs. Tigers (1968 World Series)
- Numerous tied with 6 steals, most recently Kenny Lofton for Cleveland in the 1995 World Series
The 1967 and 1968 World Series both went seven games, and no player has stolen even five bases in the World Series since Omar Vizquel in 1997. The stolen wicked has been a demise artwork the last few a long time, even though it has near relieve in a mountainous manner this October. Runners are going with reckless abandon this postseason and the Braves bear contributed to that, although no longer in a merely manner.
Runners are 13 for 13 stealing bases against Atlanta this postseason, so roughly one-third of all postseason stolen wicked attempts bear near against them. Controlling the working sport is a weakness because Atlanta has numerous pitchers who are sluggish to the plate, and since catcher Travis d’Arnaud’s arm will not be any longer mountainous (14 p.c caught stealing fee the closing two years).
The Braves bear an exploitable weakness in stolen bases and the Astros are all about exploiting weaknesses. Eight stolen bases in a postseason sequence is a ton, nonetheless all it takes is one three- or four-hang sport to give Tucker an valid likelihood at the file. He’s been mountainous and shall be on-wicked a ton. I boldly predict Brock’s World Series stolen wicked file will tumble.
Also, I’m going to throw in a sub-valorous prediction in right here: Tyler Matzek will not be any longer going to less than tie the postseason appearance file. He’s pitched in nine games already and the file is 14 by Brandon Morrow in 2017 and Paul Assenmacher in 1997. Matzek pitching five times in the World Series seems extremely doable. He may perhaps even spoil the file given his contemporary tempo.
Smyly will possible be a pitching hero
All of us know Framber Valdez and Charlie Morton will originate Sport 1. Beyond that, the rotations are up in the air, although things line up in this type of ability that we will possible stare Luis Garcia vs. Max Fried in Sport 2, and José Urquidy vs. Ian Anderson in Sport 3. What happens in Sport 4 is somebody’s guess. Can be Zack Greinke or Jake Odorizzi for Houston, and a bullpen sport for Atlanta.
Inevitably, things will scuttle haywire for every team one day in the sequence, and both somebody will near in to put the sport relieve on the rails, or throw gasoline on the fireplace. Comprise Cristian Javier with three scoreless innings in ALCS Sport 4, or Nathan Eovaldi and Martin Pérez combining to allow seven runs in a single inning in the same sport.
Frequently the hero pitcher will possible be somebody sudden, and for this valorous prediction, I’m going to inform former southpaw Drew Smyly comes out of the bullpen to supply a Herculean relief appearance one day. How’s Sport 2 sound? The Astros tough up Atlanta’s starter (whomever it finally ends up being), then Smyly settles things down with three or four scoreless frames.
Smyly threw 126 2/3 mostly efficient innings at some stage in the frequent season (4.46 ERA), although he moved to the bullpen late in the year, and he merely hasn’t pitched all that principal recently. His closing four appearances:
- Oct. 20: 56 pitches in 3 1/3 innings (NLCS Sport 4)
- Oct. 2: 46 pitches in three innings
- Sept. 26: 21 pitches in 1 2/3 innings
- Sept. 21: 37 pitches in 3 1/3 innings
So that’s 160 pitches and 11 1/3 innings across four appearances in the closing calendar month. That will not be any longer principal work at all, so no person would blame Smyly for coming out of the bullpen in some unspecified time in the future and merely no longer having it. That’s what makes this prediction valorous although. The fellow no person expects to manufacture an affect comes in and makes an affect.
One thing to tell: Houston chased curveballs out of the zone bigger than any other pitch kind this season, and Smyly’s uniqueness is getting hitters to poke his curveball out of the zone. He’s no longer going to blow somebody away with his fastball at this point in his profession, nonetheless he will get you to supply at the curve. That is a moderately efficient manner to assault the Astros (merely plan no longer dangle it).
The Braves will take the World Series …
… and Jorge Soler stands out as the World Series MVP. Why no longer? Soler left out the first four games of the NLCS after testing optimistic for COVID-19, and he didn’t originate Games 5 – 6 because Adam Duvall, Joc Pederson, and Eddie Rosario had been playing so properly. In the World Series although, the Braves will possible be ready to put Soler at DH in Games 1 and a pair of, and if needed, Games 6 and 7 as properly.
Soler modified into very honest staunch after coming over from the Royals at the trade closing date, hitting .269/.358/.524 with 14 home runs in 55 games with the Braves. His pull power is enormous, and when you occur to are going to be a pull accurate-handed hitter, there are worse ballparks to play than Minute Maid Park. Attempt Soler’s 2021 line drives and hover balls overlaid on Minute Maid Park:
Oh yeah, the Crawford Boxes beckon. It nearly seems cherish Minute Maid Park modified into constructed for Soler given his ability to pull the ball in the air to left discipline. He’ll be in the lineup at DH in Games 1 and a pair of as a minimum, and it’s no longer unheard of for a DH to take World Series MVP while no longer starting the NL games. Hideki Matsui did it with the 2009 Yankees.
So, my final valorous prediction requires the Braves to take splendid their second title since transferring to Atlanta in 1966, and for Soler to lead the model as World Series MVP. The Astros are insanely merely, obnoxiously so, so I even bear this sequence going the pudgy seven games. That offers Soler no longer less than four starts at DH to manufacture an affect, and fabricate an affect he will. I’m boldly predicting it.