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Saturday, September 22, 2018

Yuli Gurriel has 7-RBI night as Astros clinch playoff berth

In a season with little doubt that the defending World Series champions would return to the playoffs, Yuli Gurriel and Gerrit Cole ensured on Friday night that the Astros will compete in October again.

Gurriel harassed pitchers with his two home runs and seven RBIs. Cole bullied batters with 12 strikeouts in seven innings. George Springer’s three-run homer in the eighth dealt a gratuitous blow.

The Astros overwhelmed the Los Angeles Angels 11-3 at Minute Maid Park for a win that clinched the 12th postseason appearance in franchise history.

So, any guesses for how the Astros may fare in the playoffs this time around?

QLE Posted: September 22, 2018 at 08:35 AM | 7 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: astros, playoffs, yuli gurriel

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   1. bunyon Posted: September 22, 2018 at 10:24 AM (#5749443)
So, it looks like Red Sox/Wild Card and Astros/Indians, right?

I'd guess Red Sox/Astros LCS, which should be a great series. Which also means it'll either be a sweep or one of those two will be upset in the LDS.
   2. Ziggy's screen name Posted: September 22, 2018 at 10:49 AM (#5749453)
Somebody remember this, Gurriel will be the answer to one of BDC's trivia questions next year.
   3. Fernigal McGunnigle Posted: September 22, 2018 at 10:57 AM (#5749456)
So, it looks like Red Sox/Wild Card and Astros/Indians, right?
The Red Sox are sort of screwed in this scenario. They'll finish with the best record in baseball, and will then play either a team with 95ish wins or a team with 94ish wins. Meanwhile, the Astros will play a team with 87ish. If we keep this format eventually we'll end up with a 101 win division champ playing a 99 win wild card team, while the other series is a couple of teams with win totals in the 80s.

Yes I know that at least in theory the Wild Card team won't have its pitching set up for the short series.
   4. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: September 22, 2018 at 11:03 AM (#5749457)
If we keep this format eventually we'll end up with a 101 win division champ playing a 99 win wild card team, while the other series is a couple of teams with win totals in the 80s.


Came close in 2015. The 101 win Cardinals played the 97 win Cubs, while the 92 win Dodgers played the 90 win Mets. Of course the 90 win team went to the WS.
   5. Walt Davis Posted: September 22, 2018 at 06:57 PM (#5749709)
The win totals aren't as exciting but chances are good the NL-leading Cubs will face the NL's 2nd-best record Brewers in the NLDS (unless the Brewers pass the Cubs for the best record in which case they could face the 2nd-best Cubs). So it goes.

While it may seem "unfair", the WC has solved the "problem" that the Yanks or A's would be going home at the end of the week.

By the way, the AL Central has rallied a bit, especially against the ALE.

vs ALE: 72-91 (KC 9-24)
vs ALW: 50-113 (incredible)
vs NLC: 36-57 (just below 400)

Cle is 40-44 outside the ALC.

Meanwhile the ALE is +4 vs ALW with the top 3 teams all with comfortable winning records. The A's are 21-11 vs ALE but the Astros just 500.

Interleague sits at 140-143 (AL vs NL) which of course is mostly due to the pathetic ALC.

Over in the NL, Atl 46-23 in the NLE and a bit below 500 against everybody else. The Cubs are a very solid 52-32 outside of the NLC; the Brewers an even better 53-30 and the Cards 7 games over. LA is 8 games over and the Rox 7. The NLC is +4 vs NLE and +18 vs NLW; NLW is +10 vs NLE.

So presumably an Atl-Cle WS.
   6. John DiFool2 Posted: September 22, 2018 at 08:07 PM (#5749733)
The Red Sox are sort of screwed in this scenario. They'll finish with the best record in baseball, and will then play either a team with 95ish wins or a team with 94ish wins. Meanwhile, the Astros will play a team with 87ish.


The Indians probably are not all that worse, if at all, than either NY or Oak.

I do, however, concur with your broader implication that they should reseed on the overall records after the WC round, and not assume that the WC winner is the "worst" team left.
   7. Walt Davis Posted: September 22, 2018 at 11:30 PM (#5749813)
The Indians probably are not all that worse, if at all, than either NY or Oak.

Nah, they probably are, at least as a regular season team. As noted, they are below-500 outside the ALC, 8 under against the rest of the AL. They have a solid +154 run differential but all of that is against the ALC (+153 ... plus another +12 against the O's), including a staggering +69 against Detroit in just 19 games. They are 9-16 with a -32 run differential against the other AL playoff teams. Or I guess now 10-16 with a -31 differential.

The Indians went 45-24 against the ALC but, against non-Cle ALC, Hou went 21-4, the A's went 21-5, the Yanks 18-9 and Bos 16-10 ... and each of those has a winning record against Cle exc Bos now at 3-3. Cleveland is probably about the same as TB (21-11 vs ALC including 4-2 against Cle, +31 differential).

The ALC is really, really bad. Put the Yanks or Oakland in that division in place of Cle and they're probably sitting on about 105 wins. Given structural changes, there's really no way to define "the worst division in history" but this is probably it.

That said, they might make a fine playoff team reduced to those 4 killer SP, a shortened pen for any close game and limited PT for their under-performing bench. Their top 13 or so players probably can hang with anybody else in the AL so as long as they don't need much from the other 12, they could hang in there. And of course it's baseball, anything can happen.

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