The American League baseball playoffs are a complete shocker to me. The Cleveland Windians (a great play on words if I do say so myself) are up a stunning 3-0 on the Toronto Blue Jays. The Tribe’s starting pitching has shut down the bats faster than I can run to the kitchen on a commercial break. Where are the explosive Toronto bats? I thought Cleveland would give them a great series and in the end the Jays would be in the World Series. I was totally wrong on that prediction!
The Cleveland Windians are headed to the World Series barring an epic meltdown this week. The city of Cleveland ended a long championship drought when the Cavaliers won the title last June. Can the Indians win a World Series, something they have not done since 1948? Can the city handle two world champions in the same calendar year? We are about to find out!
The Chicago Cubs are currently deadlocked 1-1 with the L.A. Dodgers in the National League. A Cubs and Indians World Series would be a great watch. The Cubs have to do their part as the Dodgers will not go away easily in this series. I also hope Cubbies’ fans are darn lucky that one Clayton Kershaw won’t be able to pitch three games in this series. Mr. Kershaw put the silence on the Cubs bats the other night.
I will also tell you that as the series progresses the pressure will mount more and more on the Cubs. When you have not won a World Series since 1908 and you have the best team left in the playoffs the pressure is always swirling in the minds of those players. The bottom line is, the Cubs and Indians means one city and team will break a long World Series drought. Bring it on!
Shutting off the lights
Speaking of bringing it on, the NHL season brought it and the Red Wings lost both road games to Tampa Bay and Florida. The home opener, however, was a different story. The Ottawa Senators were defeated by the Wings 5-1 in the last-ever season opener at Joe Louis Arena. The atmosphere was almost playoff-like as Detroit dominated the Senators. Detroit needed a win and it was only fitting they won the last home opener ever at the Joe! The new Little Caesars Arena will be the Red Wings’ new home in 2017-18. The Joe has numerous memories for me, and other fans, I am sure. However, it’s time for a new arena and a new era. The seats at the Joe were small and outdated.
This is a young Red Wing hockey team and continuing the streak of playoff appearances will be a large task. The players are aware of the streak and making it 26 straight years will be on all the players’ minds. I feel the streak is almost unheard of in today’s sporting world. Let’s hope the streak is alive come April!
The Detroit Lions have won two straight nail-biters at home. The Sunday game against the Rams was a very entertaining one, I thought. The action went back and forth all game long. I thought the decision by Rams coach Jeff Fisher not to kick the field goal at the end of the first half was the turning point of the game. The Rams should have taken the three points because they were receiving the football to start the second half.
The Lions stuffed the fourth-down run and the game went to halftime tied up. The defense stepped up, but I want to say that the Lions’ defense is pretty sad overall. They can’t stop the run or the pass. Detroit will try to extend the winning streak to three games Sunday with a home game against the Washington Redskins. I actually like the Lions’ chances of winning and moving over the .500 mark to a 4-3 record. The return of Michigan State graduate Kirk Cousins has to fire up one Mr. Cousins. I like the Lions 27-24 over the Skins
Short takes: The Michigan Wolverines have moved up to No. 3 in the polls. Michigan, on the bye week, passed Clemson which struggled with the North Carolina State football team.
The NFL picks are next…
Chicago + 8 over GREEN BAY
L. A Rams + 3 over N.Y. GIANTS
PHILADELPHIA + 2 over Minnesota
New Orleans + 6.5 over KANSAS CITY
DETROIT + 1 over Washington
Cleveland + 10 over CINCINNATI
MIAMI + 3 over Buffalo
JACKSONVILLE – 1 over Oakland
TENNESSEE – 2.5 over Indianapolis
N.Y. JETS – 1 over Baltimore
San Diego + 7 over ATLANTA
Tampa Bay – 1 over SAN FRAN.
New England – 7 over PITTSBURGH
ARIZONA – 2 over Seattle
DENVER – 7 over Houston
LAST WEEK: 9-4-2 SEASON: 39-48-5
BEST BET: 0-6 BEST BET: TAMPA BAY