The 2016 World Series is ready to go with game one yesterday in Cleveland. The Chicago Cubs, winners of the National League, will face the Cleveland Indians of the American League. I think most baseball experts figured the Cubs would be in the World Series. I don’t think many expected the Cleveland Indians to be in the fall classic.
The Cubs are trying to end a long drought, dating back to 1908, since they last won the World Series. The Cleveland Indians have not one a World Series since 1948. The drought for the Indians or Cubs is coming to an end, which will be a relief for one of the two fan bases.
The boys in Las Vegas have instilled the Cubbies as 2-1 favorites to win the World Series. The Indians will relish the underdog role, that’s for sure. The Indians made it this far based on good starting pitching and excellent bullpen pitching. The Indians’ closer, Andrew Miller, is having a postseason for the ages. The Cubs also have a superb closer in Aroldis Chapman. Miller has been the better closer so far. I would say Chapman has been a tad shaky in these playoffs.
The race to the bullpen will benefit both ball clubs. Get the lead early and turn the baseball over to your closer. That will increase the chances of either team winning the series.
The Indians manager, Terry Francona, has won two World Series with Boston and is a tremendous manager in the dugout. I think Joe Maddon for the Cubs is also a really good manager and will be fine in the dugout for the Cubs. Maddon has not won a World Series, though. I like the lineups for both baseball teams and the team that hits obviously will hold a huge advantage in determining who wins the World Series.
Who does the Fat Guy like in this World Series? It’s hard for me because I like both teams and I am a rooter for the American League. However, I feel the Cubs are the better team and will find a way to win. I’m going with the Chicago Cubbies in six hard fought games.
Shake up in the rankings
The top four in college football saw the Buckeyes of Ohio State fall out after their shocking loss to Penn State. The loss saw them tumble to No. 6 in the country. The Alabama Crimson Tide is still No. 1 followed by Michigan at No. 2, Clemson at No. 3 and Washington at No. 4. I find it intriguing that the ACC, Big Ten, Pac 12, and SEC all have one team in the top four. I feel as though that is a good thing for college football and its fans. I caution all fans, though, that there are numerous football games left on the schedule. I can almost positively say these top four teams will more than likely not stay the same. There will be upsets somewhere along the way; trust me.
High Noon standoff
The Michigan and Michigan State game is on tap Saturday at high noon in East Lansing. The Spartans have won seven of the last eight meetings in this series. The ending of last year’s game was a one-in-a-million. The Spartans scored on a Michigan punt debacle. Who will ever forget that finish?
The 2016 match up features Michigan as heavy chalk according to the boys in Vegas. They have installed Michigan as 21-point favorites to win. Let’s be brutally honest. Michigan is rolling at 7-0 and destroying weak football teams. The Spartans are struggling mightily having lost five straight football games. The offense is really struggling for MSU. The shocker is the struggle of the defense. The one thing MSU coach Mark Dantonio’s teams have hung their hats on is playing suffocating defense. The Spartans are not even doing that. The Fat Guy prediction: Michigan 38, Sparty 10. firstname.lastname@example.org.
NFL picks …
Jacksonville -3.5 over TENNESSEE
CINCINNATI -2.5 over Washington
ATLANTA -3 over Green Bay
HOUSTON -3 over Detroit
NEW ORLEANS -3 over Seattle
BUFFALO -6 over New England
N.Y. Jets -3 over CLEVELAND
TAMPA BAY -1 over Oakland
Kansas City -2.5 over INDIANAPOLIS
San Diego -6 over DENVER
CAROLINA -2.5 over Arizona
DALLAS -4 over Philadelphia
Minnesota -6 over Chicago
LAST WEEK: 9-6; SEASON: 48-54-5
BEST BET: 1-6; BEST BET: CINCINNATI
(I finally won one!)