September heats up MLB playoff push
September 11, 2015
The 2015 baseball season has provided more than enough individual storylines to keep the average baseball fan entertained and engaged.
From Bryce Harper’s rise to stardom to Alex Rodriguez’s ascent back to superstar form, but now none of those individual stories matter.
It’s September, and that means October is right around the corner.
The road to the World Series goes through St. Louis and there are few teams with the arms to survive a series against baseball’s lowest ERA. This team should make short work of most of the NL, especially if the club shuts down some of its more important pitchers soon.
St. Louis has to be the current favorite to win it all.
The biggest obstacle is a Chicago Cubs team that has a firm grasp on the second wild card. The Cubs were only expected to win 80 games and have already matched that total with three weeks left to play. The scorching hot Chicago team has been backed by the big bats of rookie Kris Bryant and superstar Anthony Rizzo and the nearly untouchable righty pitcher Jake Arrieta.
Meanwhile in the AL, the conversation has to start with the Kansas City Royals. The AL Central leading team bolstered their roster after last year’s surprise run to the fall Classic. The Royals pitching staff is still just as dominant as last year both in the bullpen and rotation. The only real knock on this team’s performance is the fact that it plays in a weak AL Central, resulting in more than a few “easy” wins.
The Houston Astros provide one of the two biggest surprises of the season. The formula to break a long playoff drought has been to win behind players like Jose Altuve, Carlos Gomez, and Evan Gattis filling out a quietly good lineup that also plays great defense. That’s not mentioning the best pitching lineup in the AL with Dallas Keuchel leading a rotation with the lowest ERA in the AL.
All in all, Houston has a very good shot at playing in the Fall Classic in their first playoff appearance since their last World Series appearance, a 0-4 loss in 2005 to the White Sox. Teams like the Texas Rangers and the Toronto Blue Jays have dynamic offenses, but Houston and Kansas City have played like the cream of the crop in the AL.