Thursday, November 12, 2009

Division Round Preview

Wild card teams took 3 of the 4 play-in series, although they could hardly be called upsets. Things should get tougher for the wild cards going against the top 2 seeds, though. Here's a look at the upcoming Division Playoff Series':

Little Rock vs. Hartford: the numbers all say Hartford, as they won the season series 7-3. The teams are pretty even pitching-wise, but the Katanas outscored the Pebbles by almost 400 runs during the regular season. If Little Rock can keep games close and inject the "Sosa Factor," they have a chance, but that seems like a steep hill to climb. Hartford in 4.

Jackson vs. Richmond: Richmond surprisingly won the season series, 6-4, and the teams are very close statistically. Jackson won more games than their runs differential would predict (103 vs. 98), and Richmond won fewer (88 vs 92). So, while the safe pick would be to go with the Champs, I'm saying Richmond in 5 for what is only a mild upset pick.

Mexico City vs. Oakland: Gary Ramsay wasn't unbeatable after joining Oakland, but he was 13-6, 2.77. With Ramsay starting twice, and the league's leading offense (947 runs), I think The Surenos will be too much for Mexico City. Oakland in 4.

Charleston vs. Syracuse: perhaps the most intruging second-round series. The Warriors took the season series 6-4. Statistically, Charleston appears to have an edge in pitching, although the Warriors' late-season pickup of Ruben James (9-2, 2.42 in 14 starts) makes it closer than the numbers suggest. Syracuse has a slight edge on offense, and the teams were identical on defense. I'm only confident in predicting it'll go 5, and I'm going to hedge my prediction just slghtly: whoever wins Game 1 gets thte only advantage there is to get and wins the series.

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