MLB playoffs preview and predictions

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This past weekend the MLB playoffs began with the new wild card best of three round where the Phillies, Padres, Guardians, and Mariners all punched their tickets to the divisional rounds. Now, we enter October baseball, where anything can happen. Here are my predictions for the entire playoffs and what to look out for in each series.

NLDS (Best Of 5): 

1 Dodgers vs 5 Padres 

Prediction: Dodgers in 4 

All the trash talk and storylines from both sides  of this NL West rivalry will come together when the 1 seeded Dodgers face the 5 seeded Padres, who are coming off their Wild Card round win vs the Mets. The Padres are without superstar SS Fernando Tatis Jr due to suspension, but that doesn’t mean they still don’t have a chance against the Dodgers. Trade deadline acquisition Juan Soto showed up big in the Wild Card round win and the Padres starting pitching staff and bullpen have seem to hit their stride at the right time. But, when I look at the Dodgers, I can’t bet against them this early. Mookie Betts had an MVP caliber season and Freddie Freeman and Trae Turner were #1 and #2 in hits this season in all of baseball. Combine the Dodgers insanely high powered offense with a pitching staff led by Clayton Kershaw and the severely underrated yet elite Julio Urias, and you’ve got yourself a recipe for a Dodgers series win in 4 games.  

2 Braves vs 6 Phillies 

Prediction: Braves in 5 

After a decade of no playoff appearances the Phillies are back and are looking to upset the defending champions and 2 seed, the Atlanta Braves. Despite losing their longtime leader Freddie Freeman to the Dodgers in free agency, the Braves have stayed strong. The offense is headlined by one of the best hitting catchers in all of baseball William Contreras along with former top pick SS Dansby Swanson as well as young superstar Ronald Acuna Jr. The Braves have a lot of experience given the teams title run last season, but the Phillies have the talent to make this a series. Philadelphia has their own elite hitting Catcher in JT Realmuto helping spark their offense along with 46 HR hitter Kyle Schwarber, 1B slugger Rhys Hoskins, and superstar RF/DH Bryce Harper who dealt with injuries all season long but is good to go for this playoff run. In the end, I expect this series to produce a lot of offense aside from when the aces pitch, and I think experience will win out in a win or go home game 5 as the Braves will advance to the NLCS.  

ALDS (Best of 5) 

1 Astros vs 5 Mariners 

Prediction: Astros in 3 

I’m going to keep this one short and sweet: the Mariners aren’t ready to compete with the Astros. The Astros are simply too good and too experienced to be challenged by the Mariners in a playoff setting. Mariners young star CF Julio Rodriguez is an absolute stud and will most likely be the best player in baseball in the near future, but not right now. The Astros will easily sweep the Mariners and continue to try to complete their redemption arc after the cheating scandal a few years back. 

2 Yankee vs 3 Guardians 

Prediction: Yankees in 4 

If the Rays had beaten the Guardians in the Wild Card I would’ve had them upsetting the Yankees, but that didn’t happen, and the Jose Ramirez led Guardians are here to try to end a historic Yankees season. We all know about the Aaron Judge HR record, so I’m not going to go on and on about him, especially when the core around him deserves as much praise. 1B Anthony Rizzo is a former World Series champion with the Cubs and has been here before. On the mound, SP’s Nester Cortes and Gerrit Cole should be a lock to give the Yankees 2 wins, as I see them defeating the simply less talented Guardians in 4 games. 

NLCS (Best of 7): 

1 Dodgers vs 2 Braves  

Prediction: Braves in 7 

The trilogy of the Dodgers-Braves NLCS journey will be upon us, and I see it giving us all we want and more as the aforementioned Freedie Freeman will face his former team with a ticket to the World Series on the line. In the end, I see the Braves once again defeating the Dodgers, this time in a deciding game 7, where Ronald Acuna Jr will show why he’s one of the best in the game. As for the Dodgers, they’ll barely fall short once again, and continue to struggle to complete a championship run in a full 162 game season. 

ALCS (Best of 7): 

1 Astros vs 2 Yankees 

Prediction: Astros in 6 

The Yankees will want their revenge against the Astros in this matchup, but I don’t see them getting it, the ‘Stros have shown no indication that they aren’t a World Series caliber team, and I don’t see that stopping now. They’ll limit the Yankees offense enough to maintain home field advantage throughout the series and win in 6 games. 

World Series (Best of 7): 

Astros vs Braves 

Prediction: Astros in 6 

A World Series rematch is something that rarely happens, but I think it’s coming. The Astros will avenge last seasons loss to the Braves and complete one of the weirdest journeys back to glory sports has ever seen. As for World Series MVP, I see Yordan Alvarez capping off a ridiculously good season and hitting enough HR’s in the Fall Classic to earn himself the honor. 

There are my 2022 MLB playoff predictions. October baseball is here once again and this year promises to be one of the best postseason we’ve seen, and it begins with the divisional series on Tuesday, October 11th