It’s the closest they’ll get to the WS.
There’s the problem.
When I think “postseason success”, I think Don Mattingly.
I was thinking about the WS roster and my guess is there will be no change from the ALCS roster. The DH spot has been a hole with Mancini and Diaz, but I’m not sure who would replace either one, Henley is already on the roster. Perhaps a third catcher, but Lee is the only option there, or a bullpen lefty, but Smith is the only option there.
I think the Astros will stand pat and that one of these guys will start hitting.
Yeah, I mean, unexplored territory, meeting an unlikely, white hot NL East team in the World Series. What could go wrong?
You could replace Mancini’s spot with Meyers.
His role would be PR/defensive replacement in CF.
DH would be Diaz/Hensley.
I guess Vasquez could DH but that’s a gamble even with a 3rd catcher.
I’m not necessarily advocating that scenario but it’s feasible.
I’m thinking Martinez is out and Smith is in. Extra off day in this series so the move for a specialized reliever like Smith is more palatable and the Phils do have Schwarber and Harper. But full disclosure…I didn’t look at the splits on either.
Harper OPS is around 150 points lower vs lefties, Schwarber it’s like 210 lower vs lefties
When the Postseason started, I figured they’d want at least one lefty in the pen, just to face a lefty in a big situation, especially not having Maton, who was generally good against left handers. But then they let both Montero and Brown face Rizzo, comfortable both are also good against lefties. Neither situation worked out all that great, so maybe they’re back to thinking they need a lefty. I hate to think of a game coming down to needing one big out against Schwarber or Harper and wishing you had a Smith.
I’d hate to see a game come down to a big out against Schwarber or Harper and have to rely on Smith to get it.
I keep seeing this rationale, but what about the Phillies suggests “white hot”? They won two series against favored teams, sure, but it’s not like they went on a tear in September and came into the postseason riding a high. They had a losing record in September/October and squeaked into the third Wild Card spot by a game (after dropping 2/3 to a Houston team that had zero to play for).
The Nationals and Braves had both played great baseball down the stretch (Washington won three more games than the Astros and I think Houston won 3-4 more than Atlanta, comparatively). This Phillies team went 38-32 after the ASB.
Small sample sizes matter in October, yes. Games are not played on paper, no. The Phillies can ride Harper and Schwarber and Wheeler to a win in a seven-game series, yes. But I don’t think this is the same situation as 2019 or 2021.
I’m as nervous as the next guy - hey, anything can happen - and the next week is going to take a couple of years off my life, I’m sure, but I think I want Houston to win, as much as anything, to spite this narrative.
No, no, and hell no re Mancini and Meyers.
I would add Smith.
Not to mention that this Astros team is better than last years team, and it’s not even really close. This team may not be as good as 19, but these Phillies are not as good as those Nationals or Braves either, I don’t think. That’s not to say that they couldn’t win, of course they can, this is the postseason, anybody can beat anybody at any time for no reason at all.
I think the Phillies will need to play near perfect baseball to win the series, the Astros are going to give it to them. They could, but I’m confident in this team. Let’s fucking go win this thing.
I hate having to wait until Friday.
I think you left out a word.
9-2 against THREE higher-seeded teams seems pretty “white hot” to me
Momentum in baseball goes as far as the next day’s starter.
Or something like that.
The Phillies are very hot and playing with ton of confidence. Look no further than how they came back multiple times in their home games vs San Diego. They fell down 4-0 in game 4 after a half inning and were trailing 3-2 in the eighth in game 5.
The difference between this year’s Astros and last year’s team is their overall pitching quality is much stronger. Starting pitching wise, you have a healthy Verlander and McCullers, Javier is now pitching like an ace, and Framber found his 2020 form. The 2022 bullpen is deeper, too. Good pitching gives you a chance in any game.
I think it is possible that the Astros may use up to five different starters. I think JV, Framber, Javier and McCullers will all get starts just like the ALCS. If it were to go to five games, Urquidy or Garcia may start rather than the game one starter. The game one starter would have had four days rest so that would be the conventional, and perhaps most likely move, but having to face a fifth different starter might be difficult for the Phils. Then, of course, the top two starters are ready in case there’s a game six and seven.