Tuesday, October 27, 2015

A meaningless World Series prediction

The World Series gets started today, at long last.

It's an interesting matchup.

The Royals had the best record (95-67) in a very even American League; they have an outstanding defense, a superlative bullpen even with Greg Holland injured, and a lineup well made for its power-suppressing home grounds. Their flaws: The rotation is below average and they don't hit many homers -- and their best power hitter, designated hitter Kendrys Morales, will probably be out of the lineup in the games at New York.

The Mets' (90-72) strengths: A rotation stacked with power arms. Their lineup, which was awful in the first half, improved sharply in the second half, largely because the on-base percentages increased.They have more power than the Royals, with seven hitters in double-digits for homers. Their flaws: their middle infield is shaky defensively and they're not particularly fast.

I appreciate the point Pedro Martinez made on TBS at the end of the NL series: The Mets have beaten better starting pitchers this month than the Royals have to offer. They've beaten Clayton Kershaw, Zach Greinke, Jon Lester and Jake Arrieta. But I'm still taking the Royals. Three points:

  • The Royals feast on fastballs. They hit .284 this year when swinging at fastballs 95 mph or higher. The Cubs were trying to jack everything into the seats against the Mets velocity; the Royals will take their singles and doubles.
  • A lot of the Mets offense this month came off the bat of Daniel Murphy. He's not that good, and this will not continue.
  • The Mets power will be negated in Kaufmann Stadium.
Royals in six.

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