MLB Playoffs : Daily Preview
By: James Kelly Jr. – @KellyJLive
Boston Red Sox at Cleveland Indians – 4:30 pm – TBS
Nothing about this pitching matchup favors Boston. When I think of terrible postseason performers, David Price is the first name that comes to mind. This will determine the series. Red Sox manager, John Farrell, will either be held a hero or a goat. Despite his 17-9 record, Price is just 2-7 in the postseason.
Cy Young candidate, Corey Kluber, 18-9 this season, will make his first career playoff start. Look for Boston to try to jump on him early and often, in an effort to get Price a lead. The Indians and their fans will be riding high coming off the Game 1 victory. The bats will have to sizzle today for the Red Sox in order to avoid falling behind two games to none. I do not like Price today, and totally disagree with starting a weak playoff pitcher on the road.
Los Angeles Dodgers at Washington Nationals- 5:30 pm- FS1
A couple of former Cy Young winners tangle in Washington. Clayton Kershaw still has many unanswered questions on whether or not he is going to be a playoff performer or not. His 2-6 lifetime postseason record leaves much to be desired. However, he is Kershaw, and knows how to keep hitters off-balance. We shall see.
Max Scherzer has a little better playoff mark, at 4-3. Scherzer has an overpowering fastball that can top out at around 95. He has his work cut out for him, facing great fastball hitters like Chase Utley and Adrian Gonzalez. Utley is no church mouse in the postseason, and usually swings a hot bat.
I like Daniel Murphy and the Nats today. Murphy has been sweltering hot all season, and now finds himself back in familiar territory: The playoffs. Bryce Harper is just chomping at the bit to start a new season. The Nats pitching matches up much better in this series than the Dodgers. The Dodgers need a split in the first two, or its over. Rich Hill may be the guy to get it for them in Game 2.
San Francisco Giants at Chicago Cubs – 9 pm – FS1
The fans of Wrigley have waited all year, and now it’s here. Christmas in October. The 103-58 Cubs send 19 game winner, Jon Lester, to the mound to face the Giants. Should be another pitching duel in Chicago tonight, with 18-5 Johnny Cueto going for San Francisco. Both have postseason experience. Lester is 6-6, and Cueto is 2-3.
I’m expecting the Cubs to blow up and show everyone how dominant they really are. Anthony Rizzo and Kris Bryant will have big series. Jason Heyward will look to forget a horrible season at the plate, and build on that lifetime .206 average in the postseason. The Cubs have all the pieces, but the Giants have the X-factor in Madison Bumgarner. He will have to win games 2 and 5, and they’ll need another win from somebody else. Perhaps Cueto tonight ? I like the Cubs tonight, and expect a split going back to the Bay area.