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2012 MLB predictions Part 3-Postseason

Posted Friday, March 30, 2012, at 7:55 AM

So, earlier in the week we took a deep look into the American League. Next, we made our way through the National League picks. That means that today is postseason day.

The postseason is really tough to predict. Not only do you have to rely on your early picks, but you have to have an idea of whose record will fall where in an effort to determine playoff seeding.

In the American League Wild Card Playoff game, I have Boston (who I believe will finish second to Tampa Bay) up against Texas (who I have finishing below Anaheim in the regular season). Winner=Boston

In the American League Division series I have matched up Tampa Bay against Anaheim. Winner=Tampa Bay

Wild Card Playoff game winner Boston will have to go up against the offensively stacked Detroit Tigers. Winner=Detroit

That sets us up for an American League Championship Series between the Boston Red Sox and the Anaheim Angels. While Anaheim has a stellar rotation, Detroit's rotation and explosive offense would likely be more than the Angels could handle over a seven game series. AL Winner=Detroit

Now over to the National League.

Again, my three division winners were San Francisco, St. Louis and Philadelphia. I think Washington will have a good year, but not good enough to pass the Phillies, so I sent them to the Wildcard Playoff Game. Facing Washingon, will be the Los Angeles Dodgers. While the Dodgers have struggled through a couple seasons, I think they're going to improve this season. With new owner Magic Johnson and the renewal of Matt Kemp's contract, they should put up respectable numbers. Winner=Washington

In the National League Division Series, the first match-up is between San Francisco and Philadelphia. The Giants may have a great year, but I expect the Phillies to have a better one so they move on to the National League Championship Series. Winner=Philadelphia

In the other Division Series pairing I have the St. Louis Cardinals against the Washington Nationals. While Washington might have improved, last year's postseason experience should have many of the Cardinals youngsters pretty solid in pressure situations. I think that gives St. Louis a slight edge. Winner=St. Louis

That leaves us with a National League Championship Series between the Philadelphia Phillies and the St. Louis Cardinals. One of the best pitcher's duels of all time came out of their postseason matchup in 2011. I expect nothing less in 2012. If the Phillies are on top of their game, they make it through, but if they give the Cardinals a chance that could change. Winner=Philadelphia

Now for the World Series, the Fall Classic, the Grand Pubaa of baseball games. You already know the teams, Detroit and Philadelphia. How do I predict it going? If I was a betting man I would bet on Detroit in six games. Both teams are as strong as they come and for either to win would not be shocking, but I really just feel like its Detroit's year.

The team hasn't won a World Series since 1984 and after breaking the American League loss record in 2003 (119 games) and losing the World Series to St. Louis in 2006, they are ready. The front office has made most of the moves it needed to in order to ensure the team continues to grow and grow they have.

Just a reminder that these are only predictions. Take them all in good fun and feel free to give me your own thoughts and predictions.

Happy baseball!



To submit a question for the Balls & Strikes Mailbag, either e-mail cnoles@dailystatesman.com , call (573)624-4545 or fill out the form at dailystatesman.com/blogs/coreynoles/

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Corey Noles, staff writer for The Daily Statesman and Editor of The North Stoddard Countian, is the author of a regular baseball/St. Louis Cardinals column and also uses his blog to sound off on various happenings in sports. He also operates a weekly baseball mailbag column.

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