2011 World Series Preview & Prediction
Lineup – When you have the ALCS MVP batting seventh in your lineup then you definitely get the edge in this category. Nelson Cruz has been hotter than the sun lately, while Michael Young, David Murphy, and Mike Napoli have supplied the consistency. Oh, and it doesn’t hurt to have Kinsler, Hamilton, and Andrus at the top of the lineup too.
Rotation – Call this a cop-out, but I really can’t give the edge to either team’s starting pitching staff. Carpenter and Wilson have both been brilliant as their team’s respective number one’s and Garcia and Lewis have been quality number two’s. It really comes down to the back of the rotations. The Cardinals anchor their rotation with Edwin Jackson and Kyle Lohse while the Rangers throw out Matt Harrison and Holland. If I HAD to choose I’d give the Cards the slight edge, largely due to Chris Carpenter.
Bullpen – Going into the playoffs the St. Louis Cardinals’ biggest concern was their bullpen. Now, it’s their biggest asset. The Cards have a plethora of flamethrowers, ending with closer Jason Motte. Motte has faced 25 batters this postseason and hasn’t given up a single run. He also sports an absurd 0.13 WHIP. Fellow flamethrowers Mitchell Boggs and Fernando Salas have been exceptional in their roles as the bridges to Motte as well.
Prediction – Rangers in 7