World Series Preview: Texas Rangers vs St.Louis Cardinals
Ah, the time has come, the 2011 World Series has arrived. The moment all fans have been waiting for from the start of the regular season. Many people before the season started thought the perennial power houses from Boston, Philadelphia, and New York (Yankees) would be the World Series contenders after the LCS’. Well, that didn’t happen this year. The Redsox failed to even make the playoffs after the most epic collapse in MLB history through the month of September that allowed division rivals Tampa Bay to claim the Wild Card in the final day of the season. The Yankees, were upset by the Detroit Tigers in the ALDS in a do or die game five at Yankee Stadium. The Phillies, were also upset, over in the NLDS by the St.Louis Cardinals, who had to fight all the way to the last day of the season to beat out the Atlanta Braves for the NL Wild Card. So since the three power house franchises aren’t in the World Series (for the SECOND YEAR IN A ROW), who is? Well, it’s those pesky St.Louis Cardinals and last year’s AL Champion Texas Rangers.
Keys To The Series:
St.Louis Cardinals – The offense HAS to keep the pace it has been on in the NLCS vs Milwaukee. They scored six, twelve, four, two, seven , and twelve. The two and four aren’t too impressive, but the offense was really just so good, all series. Another strong point was the bullpen. Yes, the bullpen. The same bullpen that was looking for major upgrades at the trade deadline and looking at Padres set up man Mike Adams (who got traded to Texas) and Padres closer Heath Bell (who stayed put). The starters have to go deeper in games and not put so much pressure on the bullpen. There’s just so much good this ‘pen can do without messing up. The two days off between the end of the NLCS and Game 1 of the World Series will definitely help rest up the bullpen though. The offense should be fine, with Albert Pujols, Matt Holliday, Lance Berkman, and rising star David Freese leading the charge. The starting pitching, other then ace Chris Carpenter, must last at least five innings and not give the bullpen so much work if they want to win the World Series.
Texas Rangers – C.J Wilson, Josh Hamilton, and Michael Young must wake up if Texas wants to avoid losing in the World Series for the second straight year. C.J Wilson is 0-2 with an 8+ ERA so far this post season. The bullpen has performed well to back up C.J Wilson so far. C.J can’t keep relying on the bullpen to help him out after a bad performance, he must get his head on straight for the World Series. Not only that, but he is a free agent after the World Series is over, so pending his performance in one, maybe two World Series starts, could determine what his next contract will look like and if Texas wants to re-sign him. Just like St.Louis, the Texas offense has been phenomenal thanks to Nelson Cruz (ALCS MVP), and high priced free agent third baseman Adrian Beltre. Center fielder Josh Hamilton and DH Michael Young must start hitting more if they want to win the title because you can’t keep relying on Cruz and Beltre to carry the offense by themselves. Hamilton has yet to hit a home run in the playoffs and Michael Young has been cold. If Hamilton can start hitting for power and Michael Young starts hitting, to go with Cruz and Beltre’s hot starts, Texas should have no problem beating up the Cardinals starters and bullpen. It all relies on Wilson pitching better, the bullpen holding up, and Texas getting key offensive guys going. If all that happens, Texas very well could be bringing the World Series home to Arlington,Texas.
My Prediction – It should be a fantastic World Series with two powerhouse offenses and great bullpens. If Texas can get Game 1 starter C.J Wilson going and St.Louis gets their starters to go deeper into games, it’ll make this series even more better then it already is. I have my pick, but I’m not sure how many games this will last, but i gotta go with Texas in 6 games. Adrian Beltre will be your World Series MVP.
There you have it, Rangers win the World Series in 6 games over the Cardinals.