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World Series Preview, Part 4

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In the final part of the Sidepoints World Series preview I will take a look at defense and my overall thoughts on how the series will unfold.  I won’t bother delving into unquantifiable announcer-speak like “heart” or “guts”, but if you check in with Tim McCarver.  I am sure he would be more than happy to tell you which players have the “heart of a champion”.

Getting back into it, let’s take a look at the Rangers and Giants defenses. There isn’t a tried and true defensive statistic to show defense perfectly, and errors made is certainly not the way to do it. Judging by PADE (park adjusted defensive efficiency) ratings, the Rangers rank first in the league in defense, with the Giants close behind at second. This stat, like all stats that attempt to measure defense, has its fair share of flaws, which I can delve into in another post. It does show that both teams have at least above-average defenses. There is one big difference in my mind though. The Giants infield defense scares me, a lot. To say they are shaky is being nice. Sandoval, Renteria, Sanchez, and Huff have either lost a step, or never really had a step in Sandoval’s case. The Giants benefit from having fly ball/strikeout pitchers in their staff, but there will be some groundballs hit, and whether or not the Giants can field them cleanly could go a long way in determining an outcome.  The Rangers are not without their own dilemma. Ron Washington has said that he will use defensive butcher Vlad Guerrero in the outfield for at least one game in the National Leauge park. Things always get interesting with Vlad in the outfield, but at least the Rangers are solid up the middle and get the job done more often than not.  The edge on defense goes to the Rangers despite having a liability in Vlad Guerrero.

Thoughts on the Series.

I just don’t see the Giants being able to score enough runs to win this series.  Their pitching is outstanding and has been outstanding throughout this season and into the playoffs. You generally know what you are going to get out of Lincecum, but he is matching up with Cliff Lee in game one.  If the Giants cannot find some way through the red-hot Cliff lee and bring home game one; that spells doom for their chances to hoist the Commissioner’s Trophy.  I give them the advantage from a pitching standpoint in game two with Matt Cain, but games three and four are true toss-ups depending on which Jonathan Sanchez shows up and what the managers decide to do with their aces. If the Rangers jump out to any early leads, it could be a boat race, as I don’t know where the Giants will make up runs, unless they get into the Rangers bullpen early, and like they have done most of this year, just find a way. I think asking them to win four out of seven against a team with a better lineup, better defense, and hot pitching staff is just too much. I want to pick the Rangers in five, but the Giants seem to find a way to claw out wins.

My Prediction:

Nolan Ryan will get his first championship since 1969.

Texas Rangers will defeat the San Francisco Giants in 6 games.

Discussion

4 Responses to “World Series Preview, Part 4”

  1. One question must be asked….

    … Do you believe in the power of THE BEARD yet?

    Posted by The Beard | October 28, 2010, 11:21 pm
    • Oh, I’ve always believed in the beard… just didn’t believe in the bats, they are doing their best to prove me wrong though. Just hope that Ron Washington keeps forgetting that he has Neftali Feliz.

      Posted by Jason Marlo | October 28, 2010, 11:24 pm
  2. Feliz called Ronny in and told him he’s “good to go”, so we might see him on the mound tonight.

    Posted by Bobby Digital | November 1, 2010, 12:19 pm

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