Bold 2022 World Series predictions: Record home run, complete game from Framber Valdez and more

The 2022 World Championships are here. The Houston Astros and Philadelphia Phillies will meet in this year’s Fall Classic after defeating the Yankees and Padres in the championship series, respectively. The World Series will kick off Friday night at Minute Maid Park in Houston. This is the Astros’ fourth pennant in the past six years and the Phillies’ first since 2009.

The pair has little postseason history. Philadelphia beat the Astros in the NLCS en route to a World Series in 1980, when the Astros were in the National League and the NLCS was best-of-five. That series went the distance and then some – Gary Maddox delivered the series-winning score with his tenth-inning double in Game 5.

The series also featured many of the all-time greats, most notably Pete Rose and Hall of Famers Steve Carlton, Joe Morgan, Nolan Ryan, and Mike Schmidt. New Rangers manager Bruce Bochy played in that series as well.

Of course, what happened in 1980 has no bearing on what happens in 2022, and that also applies to the final series of this regular season, when the Astros and Phillies wrapped up each other in Houston. The Astros won two of three, even though the Phillies had just clinched a postseason berth and ran tailback lineups there for games 161 and 162.

Anyway, as the World Series gets underway on Friday night, let’s make some bold predictions. Come with me, right?

There will be a record number of catching reptiles

Unless you’ve paid attention to the past few seasons, you know that home runs reign supreme in October. It’s extremely difficult to put hits and walks together due to the pitching standard these days, so your best bet is to put the points on the board in one stroke. The past few years tell you everything you need to know:

2022 regular season

4.28

1.07

2022 postseason

3.72

1.18

2021 regular season

4.53

1.22

2021 postseason

4.28

1.26

These differences between the regular season and the postseason have remained constant for years; The last two seasons are not outliers. The run rate decreases in October, but the domestic run rate remains the same, if not increasing. Homers take on additional importance in the postseason. You can win without the long ball. It’s really, really hard.

It’s no surprise, then, that three out of the four happiest world championships have come over the past six years. Here are the four most prolific fall classics in baseball history:

  1. 2017: 25 homers (15 Astros, 10 Dodgers in 7 games)
  2. 2019: 22 home runs (11 Astros, 11 nationals in 7 games)
  3. 2020: 21 homers (12 Dodgers, 9 Rays in 6 games)
  4. 2002: 21 homers (Giants 14, Angels 7 in 7 games)

For my first bold prediction, I’ll say the Astros and Phillies combine to set a new home run record for World Series hits with 26. Those two clubs were ranked fourth and sixth in home runs during the regular season, plus this series is going to be played on two teams with better than average ballparks that are home run, according to Statcast Garden Factors. This is a recipe for friends.

However, this staff was two of the four best in reducing home runs. That’s what makes this bold. However, Homer’s staff abandons the carrier pigeons. In the end, I think there is a lot of strength and a lot of attacking talent packed into two suitable pitches to bet against getting a lot of teammates beaten. A new World Series record of 26 home runs would be achieved.

The Astros would string a record winning streak

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Well, this is not the case that Bold, because the Astros have already done the hard part. They’re a perfect 7-0 this postseason thanks to their surgical dismantling of the Mariners and Yankees, even though the games have been close. Four wins in one round, two wins in two rounds, and one win in five rounds. Houston did not race anyone in October.

The Astros’ seven wins this year are fewer than ever to start the postseason. Here are the longest winning streaks to start the post-season. Obviously these are all recent because you need more rounds and more games to extend your winning streaks. Back in the day, when I won my first four postseason games, that was the case. You won the world championship.

  1. 2014 Royals: 8 wins
  2. 2022 Astros: 7 wins and counting
  3. 2020 Brave: 7 wins
  4. Rockies 2007: 7 wins
  5. 2017 Dodgers: 6 wins
  6. Cleveland 2016: 6 wins

For this bold prediction, I will say the Astros match the 2014 Royals with eight straight wins to start the postseason, but they won’t break the record. So this bold prediction boils down to the Astros winning Game 1 and the Phillies winning Game 2. Assuming each team has a 50/50 chance of winning every game (unrealistic, but let’s run with it), then the Astros win Game 1 and the Phillies win the Game 2 has a 25% chance of happening. described as bold? Well, how about this…

There will be a full world championship game

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Any idea who threw the last complete game in the World Series? My first guess was Madison Bumgarner in 2014. That was a good guess, but it was incorrect. The last complete game in the World Series was Johnny Cueto in 2015. He struck out four Mets in a two-hit, one-run complete game in Game Two of the 2015 Fall Classic. At one point that night Cueto retired 15 straight batters.

There have only been five complete World Series games this century – Cueto in Game 2 in 2015, Bumgarner in Game 5 in 2014, Cliff Lee in Game 2 in 2009, Josh Pickett in Game 6 in 2003, and Randy Johnson in Game 2 in 2001 It’s been six years since the last full postseason game. The last to do so was Justin Verlander in Game 2 of the 2017 ALCS.

My next bold prediction calls for a full game of the World Series, but with a twist: It’s going to be a full game Loss. There were seven of those in nine games during the regular season (plus a few in rain-shortened full-game losses, but not counting), which is more than I could have expected. Complete games have become rare, especially in the postseason.

There hasn’t been a complete loss of a game in the postseason since Marco Estrada in Game 1 of the 2016 ALDS and there hasn’t been a complete loss of a game in the World Series since Tom Glavine in Game 4 of the 1992 World Series when he allowed two runs. in eight innings in a 2-1 Blue Jays victory. The last pitcher to pitch nine innings in a complete World Series loss was Dave Stewart in Game 4 of the 1990 World Series.

I’ll tie that bold prediction to the last bold prediction and say that Houston’s presumptive Game 2 starter, Framber Valdez, will become the first pitcher since Glavin to lose the entire game in the World Series, and the first since Stewart to do so while pitching nine complete innings. This is how I imagine it:

  • Valdez gives up two quick spots in the first half. Let’s call it a two-race Rhys Hoskins Homer in Crawford Boxes.
  • Then Valdez would snap, including retiring 21 in a row at one point. He only needs 98 runs to pitch nine innings.
  • Zack Wheeler and a bullpen dominate the other end, choking the Astros and making those first two runs hold.

Valdez led the league with three complete games this year and averaged just 15.0 pitches per rotation this season, one of the best averages in baseball. He’s so good and so effective, he’s really one of the few pitchers in the world who can be trusted to go the distance in a World Series game. When Valdez gets into a groove, he gets a lot of weak ground balls and makes it look very easy. I boldly predict that will happen in Game 2 and Valdez will face a total loss of the game by nine innings.

Realmuto will steal two bases

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Only one catcher has stolen a base in the postseason since 2011: Austin Barnes in Game 2 of the 2017 NLDS. It makes sense, right? Catchers aren’t known for their speed at first, plus by the time October and the World Series come around, these guys have a few hundred runs behind the plate on their legs. Gripping is the most brutal stance in sports.

For this bold prediction, I will say that Phillies backstop JT Realmuto will not only steal a base in a World Series, but two bases in one game. Carlos Ruiz in Game 2 in 2008 is the last catcher to steal a base in the World Series. The last catcher to steal two bases in a World Series game was… nobody? It is not done. Hall of Famer Johnny Bench stole 2 bases in Game 4 of the 1972 NLCS, marking the only time in baseball history that a catcher stole 2 bases in a single postseason game.

Some metrics have Realmuto as the best running catcher of all time, and he’s clearly the best in the game right now. Realmuto reached 22 homers with 21 steals this year, joining Hall of Famer Ivan Rodriguez as the only 20/20 player in history (Rodriguez had 35 homers and 25 steals in 1999). Remember Homer’s Inside the Park in the NLDS? Realmuto is fast and just a great base runner. You don’t need to qualify it with “for hunting.”

As a team, the Astros posted a league-corrected steal rate in 2022 (23 percent), although they do have a few solo pitchers prone to stealing bases. Runners were a perfect 7-for-7 stealing bases against Valdez, and 8-for-8 against setup man Rafael Montero. Runners hit 10 of their last 11 stolen base attempts against Verlander as well.

Pick your spots and you can steal a base against the Astros and few players (and scratch catchers) are as adept at picking their spots as Realmuto. I call it Game 3: Realmuto steals a base against the starter (either Christian Javier or Lance McCullers Jr.) and then also grabs a sack late on against Montero late on. Two steals for a catcher in the World Series Game. It hardly gets bolder than that. unless…

The Phillies will win the World Series…

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… and Kyle Schwarber will become the MVP of the World Series. Hey, You totally nailed Jorge Soler as MVP of the World Series last year. Schwarber started the postseason terribly, going 1-for-20 with three walks (two intentional) in the Wild Card Series and NLDS. He then broke out with a 6-for-15 showing in the NLCS, hitting three homers with six walks for just three batters. When hot, Schwarber gets hot and is likely to hit 7-8 hurdles in a 10-match spell. Sometimes more.

All attention is on Bryce Harper, Philadelphia’s best left-hander, and understandably so. Harper was amazing last October and is the biggest star on the team. Schwarber is not to be overlooked. Houston’s pitching staff is very heavy and both stadiums are friendly to left-handed hitters. Schwarber has also shown he’s not afraid of the big moments. I think he hits four of his fellow World Series and knocks out the Phillies in seven games. It was expected.

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