World Series Prediction: St. Louis Cardinals Vs. Texas Rangers. Who Will Win?
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How many people predicted that these would be the two teams playing for MLB supremacy? If you are saying that you did, you’re probably telling a tall tale. Not too many people saw these two teams meeting in the World Series. I know I didn’t. Hell, NOBODY at ESPN picked St. Louis to be the National League champions. Seven experts picked them to make the playoffs, but most saw Philadelphia taking the NL crown. The Texas Rangers also didn’t make it to the championship game over at ESPN. It was all about those good ol’ Red Sox (and we all saw how that went). Personally, I had the Red Sox facing the Brewers. I was close to at least having one team in.
Texas Rangers Blockhead Snapback Cap, American Needle, $22, DrJays.com
St. Louis Cardinals MLB Tailgate Vest, Mitchell & Ness, $80, DrJays.com
Texas enters the series off of a strong 2011 campaign that saw them take the AL West with a 96-win season. After riding a six game winning streak into the playoffs, the Rangers wrecked Tampa Bay 3-1 and then dusted off Justin Verlander and the Detroit Tigers 4-2 to make it to the big dance. One of the reasons that the Rangers are in this position is the smoking hot bat of Nelson Cruz. The Monte Cristi Dominican has been flat out disrespectful to opposing pitching. While injuries slowed down his 2011 campaign (.263/29/87), Cruz has been a monster at the plate. After a quiet series against Tampa Bay, Cruz went on a rampage against Detroit. He smacked a record six home runs in the series while hitting seventh(!) in the lineup. What does that mean? The entire Rangers lineup is pretty damn lethal. There’s a reason why they led the major leagues in batting average as a team. With a lineup that includes Adrian Beltre, Michael Young, Ian Kinsler, Josh Hamilton and the guy who quietly scorched pitching in the second half of the season, Mike Napoli, it will be no fun for St. Louis to have to pitch to this team. Sure, Cruz is dangerous but any one of these guys can take flight and maul a team on any night. What’s not talked about is the Rangers pitching staff. Led by CJ Wilson, the Rangers were third in quality starts and 6th in opposing team batting average. Scooping up reliever Mike Adams at the trade deadline also helped bolster a bullpen that features 23-year-old closer Neftali Feliz.
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