So far in my playoff predictions I went 1-1 in the Wild Card games, 3-1 in the Divisional series and missed both Championship series. I had the Mets losing in both the DS and CS. I did pick the Royals to win in the DS but thought the Blue Jays would beat them in the CS. Let’s see who I might jinxed in the World Series.
This matchup is the first that didn’t include at least one team that existed as a franchise in 1903. Both are expansion teams Mets in 1962 and Royals in 1969. Mets haven’t won a World Series since 1986 and their first appearance in one since 2000 where they lost to the Yankees. The Royals haven’t won one since 1985 and have a shot at avenging last year’s loss to the Giants.
The Mets were a long shot at even making the playoffs this year in fact on July 30 they were a 52-50 team and were 3 games behind the Nationals in the NL East. They also had one of the worst offenses in baseball. Two things changed their season, one was they called up Michael Conforto on July 24th and the other was trading for Yoenis Cespedes on July 31st. They finished the season 38-22 cruising past the Nationals to win the NL East. They have one of the best young pitching staffs in all of baseball; Matt Harvey (23), Noah Syndergaard (23), Jacob deGrom (25) and Steven Matz (24). It carried them past the Dodgers and Cubs in the playoffs. Daniel Murphy having one the best postseasons for an offensive player also helped a little.
The Royals are on a mission after coming up 90 feet short from tying the Giants in Game 7 of last year’s World Series. When all the so called experts made their predictions in Spring Training most of them had the Royals in the middle of the AL Central. That put a chip on the Royals shoulder and it showed in the first month of the season. They had a few bench clearing brawls with a couple different teams. Despite all that they played like a playoff/championship team and lead the AL Central for most of the season including not being out of first place since June 7th. Last year’s playoff run was valuable experience as the Royals came back from being down 2-1 to the Astros in the DS and beating the red hot Blue Jays in the CS.
Now on to my prediction. I will be jumping all over the place so please stay with me…
The Mets strength could be their flame throwers starting pitchers but that could also play right into the Royals hands. The Royals had the best batting average against 95+ mph pitches in baseball this year. I sincerely doubt Daniel Murphy can continue his hot streak but I remember saying the same thing about Bumgarner last year. My biggest concern about the Royals is their pitching staff. Cueto, Volquez and Ventura can turn a gem one game then a complete dud in their next. The Royals bullpen on the other hand has been great, especially Wade Davis. I keep on going back and forth on who I will pick. Yesterday I was leaning toward the Mets and right now I find myself wanting to pick the Royals. The Mets pitching staff is legit but the Royals are so hungry on finishing what they couldn’t do last year.
This is going to sound crazy but I don’t really care who wins. One team is going to end a World Series drought and that’s always nice to see. I want to see a 7 game series with a few extra innings involved and maybe even a few things that haven’t been seen in 50+ years. I find myself more excited about the Hot Stove season getting started and there is nothing wrong with that.