Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Joey's Soapbox: Top Ten Reasons Why The Texas Rangers Will Win The World Series

Greetings, everyone!  Can you believe the baseball season is coming to an end?  In two short months, it'll be winter and I'll be counting down the days till pitchers and catchers report while wondering how to unfreeze my behind from the frozen ground.  (I should probably wear pants under my Mets hoodie.)

Oh, who am I, you ask?  I'm glad you asked!  This is Joey Beartran, your fav'rit inanimate prognosticator.

In case you missed it, over the past month I've given you my Division Series predictions and my League Championship Series predictions.  I fared quite well with my first round picks, correctly picking the winner in three of the four series.  However, I didn't do as well with my LCS picks, losing both series.  Some of you might #BlameBeltran but I choose to place the blame on my excitement because both the Phillies and Yankees were eliminated within 24 hours of each other in their respective Division Series matchups.

So that brings us to the grand finale, the be all and end all, the salsa on the chicken nachos.  It's World Series time!  This year's Fall Classic will feature the two-time American League champion Texas Rangers and the St. Louis Cardinals, who have won more pennants and World Series titles than any team who doesn't play in the House That Juice Built.

Instead of doing my usual prediction, I'd like to do something different in this piece.  I'm going to tell you who's going to win first (the Texas Rangers in 6) and then I'll give you my top ten reasons why they'll win.  Ready?  Let's go!

Top 10 Reasons Why The Texas Rangers Will Win The World Series

10.  The Rangers are the fifth team in the past 20 seasons to reach the World Series in consecutive seasons.  Each of the last four teams who have appeared in back-to-back World Series has won at least one title.  The '08-'09 Phillies (boo) won back-to-back pennants, winning it all in 2008.  The '98-'01 Yankees (double boo) appeared in four consecutive World Series, winning three of them (triple boo) from 1998 to 2000, before losing to Arizona in 2001 (ha ha).  The '95-'96 Braves also won two straight pennants, being crowned in 1995, and the '92-'93 Blue Jays had a mini-dynasty, but because Canada uses the metric system, it was actually a much longer dynasty than you originally believed it to be.

9.  The actor who played Rangers manager Ron Washington was really funny in Moneyball.  Cardinals skipper Tony La Russa has never been funny a day in his life.  Funny = Championship.  Just look what humor did to the Cleveland Indians in the first Major League film.

8.  Tony La Russa overused his bullpen (ya think?) in the National League Championship Series.  He plans to outdo himself in the World Series by using a different pitcher every time Nelson Cruz comes to bat.  After the first four homers, he'll make a pitching change after EVERY PITCH to Cruz.

7.  The Texas Rangers have never played a game in St. Louis.  Ever.  Their only interleague matchup against the Cardinals was in 2004, when St. Louis took two out of three from Texas at the previous Busch Stadium.  Who was the losing pitcher for the Rangers in the rubber match?  None other than R.A. Dickey!  The Rangers will adopt a "Do it for Dickey!" rallying cry in the World Series and exact their revenge on the Cardinals.

6.  The Cardinals need a rally squirrel to help them win ballgames.  The number one pastime in Texas after Cowboys football, college football and high school football is hunting.  That squirrel doesn't stand a chance.

5a)  This was our view in Texas:

5b)  This was our view in St. Louis:

5c)  The view in Texas was far better than the view in St. Louis.

4.  Chris Carpenter is 2-6 with a 7.26 ERA and 1.87 WHIP in 12 career games (11 starts) against the Texas Rangers.  It's his highest ERA and WHIP against any team (min. 50 IP).   He is also the only Cardinals pitcher to ever lose a game to the Rangers, losing to them in the middle game of their only interleague series in 2004.  (Do it for Dickey!)  In case you hadn't heard, Chris Carpenter is starting Game 1 of the World Series against the Rangers.

3.  The 21st century has been full of cities and/or greater metropolitan areas holding multiple championship parades for their victorious teams.  It happened in 2002, when the Lakers won in June and the Angels won in October.  The Boston area repeated the feat in 2004, with the Patriots winning the Super Bowl in February and the Red Sox reversing the curse in October.  It happened a third time in 2009, when the Steelers took home the Vince Lombardi trophy in February and the Penguins won the Stanley Cup in June.  The Dallas Mavericks won the NBA championship this past June.  The Rangers play just a few miles away in Arlington.  That's the definition of a greater metropolitan area, my friends.

2.  The American League and National League have alternated winning the World Series every year since 2005, with the White Sox (2005), Red Sox (2007) and Yankees (2009 - boo) taking home the trophy in the odd-numbered years and the Cardinals (2006), Phillies (2008 - hiss) and Giants (2010) taking that final champagne bath in the even-numbered years.  2011 means that it's time for the American League to pop the cork.

And the number one reason why the Texas Rangers will win the World Series is...

Two words:  Nolan Ryan.  It's been 42 years since he won his first World Series ring.  It's time for him to win a second after coming within three wins of doing it last year.  Tony La Russa has won six pennants (three in Oakland and three in St. Louis) and two World Series championships (one with each team).  He's got his rings.  Now Nolan gets his.  Period.

Enjoy the World Series!

...and do it for Dickey!

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