Predicting the postseason

Eats, doubles, and leaves.

 

On Tuesday, I was subjected to pundits. You might have been, too. Oh, there was no mercy. Pundits have very, very strong opinions on which playoff team will win each playoff series. Pundits are confident that One Team has the pitching needed, while the Other Team just can’t muster up enough intangibles. So, so confident, those pundits.

 

wholetdemcaninesloose84: who should the giants look out for in this series against the mets?

Pundit: If I were the Giants, I’d pay close attention to Timo Perez and Darryl Hamilton. Those guys are just clutch, and they’re amazing at stringing together hits at the right time. Also, don’t sleep on Bobby Jones. His ERA might be over 5.00, but he always has the potential to shut down the best offense in the league.

Nuts. They’re all nuts. The playoffs are a roulette table on acid. You put your money down on black or red, only to find out that the winner was humming obelisk on the moon. No one could have predicted that, good sir. And anyone who thinks that one team is a lock to advance past anything is insane.

RuthDidItOnRoidsToo: Come on. The Giants are just going to roll over the Marlins, right?

Pundit: I’m not sure about that one. Look, I know Jose Cruz, Jr. is probably going to win a Gold Glove for the way he patrolled Pac Bell’s right field in the regular season, but when the postseason pressure is on, he strikes me as the kind of player who would drop a lazy pop fly when the game is on the line. Sorry. Them’s the breaks. But that’s how I see it.

Oh, it can go both ways, don’t get me wrong.

I Bleed Red and Liquid Feathers: Is this Cardinals/Giants series as evenly matched as it appears to be?

Pundit: Kind of. But while the Cardinals were a completely functional and talented team in the regular season, they’ll suddenly turn into the kind of team that will go 3-for-39 with runners for scoring position over a five-game stretch for no reason. That’s how I see it. And then the Giants will advance to the World Series and lose, which will make all of their fans whine unbearably about their poor luck, not realizing that the Cardinals were THREE-FOR-THIRTY-FREAKING-NINE with runners in scoring position, which was the only reason they'll make it to the World Series in the first place.

The postseason freaks me the hell out. The postseason is when something called Manny Aybar can urinate kerosene on a bases-loaded, no-outs situation and then disappear into a mist shortly after, but not before his team can win the danged series after all. The postseason is when a Hall-of-Famer can ground into a double play to end a series with the tying run on base. The postseason is when the best team in baseball can completely and utterly flame out.

The postseason is just weird. Predict it at your own risk. Momentum is a yeti. Good luck counting on that. And I’m a scared in all the right ways.

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