z0601 has advanced from being a rookie "grasshopper" asking a million questions (back in Seasons 14-15) to an accomplished owner with his 3rd straight division title. The JBT just caught up with z to get his thoughts on the big upset win over Ottawa in the first round of the playoffs:
Did you see the win over Ottawa coming? If so what made you think you could upset the defending AL champs?
To be honest, did I like our chances? Yes. Did I think it would happen? NO. For whatever reason, we seem to match up well against Ottawa in a short series and gave them all they could handle in the post season last year and almost pulled off a bigger upset then. Once I saw we would face them in the playoffs out of the gate again this season, I knew we had improved from last year could maybe win it in 5 games, but never in a million years did I think we would sweep them. I knew if we could get our starters to not put us in a big hole early, I believed that our bullpen could close out close games. Everyone had been saying all season long that our Bullpen was a liability because we had so many 1 run games this season and our luck would run out at some point. Our bullpen has usually not been the problem, it has been our starters not being sharp from the start and putting us behind early and having to climb out of a deficit in most games. The big question in my mind was how would we get across the plate and keep them from doing the same with our rock in the middle with Jose coming off the DL but we did.
What surprised you about the series?
That their normally dangerous hitters couldn't get on track and never really seemed to find a rhythm. I think if they had gotten some runs in Game 2 and built up their confidence, you would have seen a totally different series and most likely a different result. The fact we won the last two games by 1-run each still amazes. We could have very easily been looking at a 2-1 hole heading back to Jacksonville with two swings of the bat in either game.
How do you see your chances against New Orleans?
The fact that it is a short series is the only reason we have a shot against New Orleans in my opinion. In a short series anything can happen. Our starting pitching will be key once again, as will our ability to get some hits of their great pitching. If we can do that we have a chance, if not I think we might get the broom broken out on us which has happened before and is never a fun way to end a season.