Predicting the Diamondbacks? Good luck
My homework assignment tonight from our webmaster/taskmaster is as follows:
"With the Diamondbacks in the playoffs we figured it'd be fun (and a good idea) to do some MLB playoff predictions. So without further ado, please pick the winning team and in how many games.
Right. Ok. I'll get right on that boss man. Because you know, everything about the 2011 Arizona Diamondbacks has been so…..predictable.
A 94 win season coming off back to back 90 plus loss seasons? Oh yeah, plain as day. A potential Cy Young season from Ian Kennedy? I called that one. Stellar contributions from David Hernandez, Ryan Roberts, Joe Saunders and Josh Collmenter? Saw it coming a mile away.
As much as the Gambos of the world will pound their chest and tell you they thought the D-backs were capable of contending in 2011, the truth is nobody -not a blessed soul - would have bet a mortgage payment on any of the above happening. So now I'm supposed to tell you what I think is going to happen in regards to a scenario which I never dreamt was possible of happening in the first place?
Ok. I haven't been right about a thing when it comes to Diamondbacks predictions, but, ok.
I compare these teams side by side and they're pretty similar. Rotation, bullpen, home record….all of that. Both teams had easy schedules down the stretch so both teams come into the postseason playing good baseball. The one glaring advantage for Milwaukee is their two MVP candidates to the D-backs' one. The one slight advantage is the depth of their rotation; I think top to bottom the Brewers' four is better than the D-backs' four.
X-Factor guys for the D-backs are Daniel Hudson, Saunders, Paul Goldschmidt and Miguel Montero. In particular, I'll be watching Hudson in game two. Already an emotional guy to begin with, he'll need to work extra hard to keep things in check for potentially two starts in this series. Given that I think it's a pretty even series, one that will come down to a fifth game in Milwaukee, I wouldn't want to pick against the Brewers at home so I'll say Milwaukee in five.
You know, the same shlub who said back in March he'd take the under on wins (69) is now telling you Brewers in five. Forget a grain of salt, here's the whole shaker.
But one thing that is for certain; I'm not in the mood to tackle the "big picture" question for the D-backs. The one that asks if the D-backs are poised for real, long term success. We all thought they were back in 2007 and we were all wrong. Given the quality of starting pitching that is on its way combined with what is already here I believe they are. My co-host says the D-backs will win a World Series in the next five years.
I'd be thrilled with winning a playoff series in the next five days.