Posts Tagged ‘2013 World Series’

Some Thoughts on the 2013 World Series

November 4, 2013

A few random thoughts in no particular order:

1. Congrats to the Red Sox.

2. Both teams had the best record in their league so we finally got to see the two best, not two hottest, teams play each other.

3, Can we knock off with this dynasty stuff? Three wins in 10 years, none of them consecutive, doesn’t make for a dynasty. If you think it does, then the Cards are also a dynasty having two wins in six years (2006 and 2011). It’s a nice team, but not a dynasty.

4. It wasn’t a particularly well-played Series. Lots of errors and bone head plays.

5. Isn’t it interesting that David Ortiz is finally getting his due. The other victories (although Ortiz was instrumental in 2004’s ALCS) seemed to hold up other players as the rock of the Red Sox. There was Schilling, there was Ramirez, there was Damon and Pedroia. There was always someone other than Ortiz getting the most credit for the victories (again leaving aside the 2004 ALCS). Now finally Ortiz gets to step front and center. Having just said all that, I still don’t consider him a Hall of Famer at this point.

6. It will be interesting to see how both teams do in the offseason. The Cards have to decide on Beltran and find out if Chris Carpenter can still pitch. The BoSox have to figure out what to do with Drew and Ellsbury. Wouldn’t it be interesting to see St. Louis go after both? Ellsbury leading off in St. Louis (with current leadoff man Carpenter hitting 2nd) would add a new dimension to the Cards lineup and Drew hits better than Kozma. I have no idea where Ellsbury will go, if anywhere, but Detroit could certainly use an infusion of speed in that lineup. Frankly, I think the loss of Ellsbury and Drew will hurt Boston more than losing Beltran will hurt St. Louis. But then maybe all of them will stay where they are. These things are impossible to predict (Heck, maybe my Dodgers will end up with a couple of them).

7. Finally, I don’t expect to see a repeat next year.

So It’s These Two Is It?

October 20, 2013
A pair of socks

A pair of socks

Well, we now know it will be the Cardinals in Boston on Wednesday night for game one of the 2013 World Series. As a Dodgers fan, I’m disappointed. But as a baseball fan it looks to be a good matchup. Here’s a few reasons why:

Birds on a bat

Birds on a bat

1. it will be the fourth time St. Louis and the Red Sox have squared off in a World Series. The Cards won the first two (1946, 1967), the BoSox the last (2004). So there’s a certain amount of tradition in the matchup and baseball loves its tradition.

2. Both are baseball towns. When the Rams won the Super Bowl, I recall the coach complaining that although he was congratulated, the next words out of  people’s mouths were “But wouldn’t have been great if it were the Cardinals.” Robert Kraft is supposed to have said pretty much the same thing about Boston each time the Patriots won. I always like to see towns that truly embrace baseball get a chance at the Series.

3. The teams were the best in each league during the regular season. Both ended the season with the best record in their league and had home field all the way to this point. That’s kind of nice to see.

4. Ever notice how alike the players are on each team? Take a look down the stat chart of the Cardinals and essentially, excepting Kozma at short, you’re looking at pretty much the same player. All seven non-shortstop every day players have OPS+ between 101 and 144 (I’m presuming here that Craig is going to play in the Series. They say he will, but we’ll have to see.). All have OBPs .339 and .392. There aren’t a lot of big home run numbers (Beltran has 24). If you do the same thing with the Sox, leaving out one player, in this case Middlebrooks, and excluding the DH–Ortiz–because the Cards don’t have a regular DH (they used four in their interleague games) you find that Boston is pretty much the same. There’s a bit more pop in Boston and no Card steals a lot of bases unlike Ellsbury and Victorino (and Pedroia who on a lot of teams would hit 2nd rather than 3rd). I think that will make for a good Series.

5. Other than Wainwright neither team has a particularly outstanding pitcher. The Dodgers and Tigers had those and they’re sitting at home. Having just said that, I’m not sure what to do with Wacha. He had only 15 games during the regular season, but he’s been a revelation in his last regular start and in the postseason. I think following him could be one of the best stories during the Series (or he’ll get shelled and become an afterthought–who knows).

Those are reasons I think it can be a great Series. We’ve had a lot of blowouts lately (2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2012) and few really compelling confrontations (2001, 2002, and 2011 are the only 7 game Series’ in the 21st Century). Hopefully for fans and casual viewers this will be one of the latter. As to who’s going to win? I’ll quote, as I’ve done before, Winston Churchill, “It is always easier to prophesy after the event.”