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2007-10-24 10:36
by Mark T.R. Donohue

I don't know if I can stand searching around and reading every single World Series preview on the Internet this morning... but maybe you guys can. Please send along any links to thought-provoking previews you've read, whether they give the Rockies a chance or not. And what are your predictions? My feelings won't be hurt if you think the Red Sox are going to win. I don't think they are -- I'll admit it, while traditionally I'm a skeptic (and anything but a joiner) there is a Thing about this Rockies team, and the 2005 White Sox, the last World Series winner to which I really paid close attention for the whole season, had it too. And the Cubs I assure you have never had it, although they did have LaTroy Hawkins, which is a source of some concern.

Can the Rockies win a Game 6 or a Game 7 in Boston? Of course they can. The odds would not be in their favor but homefield advantage means by far the least in baseball among American team sports. I think it might be an even better question to ask if the Red Sox can win any games in Denver, where they will be at a huge disadvantage. It's hard to believe a name like his could be an X-factor, but Tim Wakefield was left off the World Series roster essentially because of Coors -- a guy who has been vital for Boston in about four of their last seven playoff series was sent to the cheering section because the altitude is already in their heads. I'm just saying.

Aaron Cook is going to replace Franklin Morales in the rotation, by the way. That gives the Rockies another strikeout lefty in the bullpen and if Cook is his old self it means that Colorado has another born double play-generator to soak up innings against the baserunner-intensive Boston offense. The Rockies' advantage on defense in the NLCS was merely slight -- Arizona is another young, athletic team, although an injury to Orlando Hudson hurt severely -- but their advantage in this series is massive. Other than Garrett Atkins and his lack of range at third (and Willy Taveras's deficient brain) the Rockies don't have massive defense/offense platoon issues at many positions. They can play their best defensive lineup and still send about the best offense they can muster out to hit, too. The Red Sox have issues with Papi's defense, Manny's defense, where Youkilis is going to play, Julio Lugo's defense AND hitting, J.D. Drew's utter lack of interest in anything besides J.D. Drew, and hey, Josh Beckett's back. The Rockies are healthier than they were for the entire regular season.

Also, if Boston loses Game 1, it's death, and they know it. The Rockies aren't expected to make contact off of Beckett, let alone beat him, and they know this too. I respect the power of an ace, but it always puzzles me when people confuse the fact that their team's going to get an automatic quality start with an automatic win. Beckett could throw seven shutout innings, Jeff Francis could go six and allow two, and the Rockies could win the game the bullpen. Or Francis could beat Beckett flat-out -- he's not chopped liver and southpaws have less of a disadvantage at Fenway. The Channel ought to be away, away, away to all of Boston's righthanded hitters, keeping fly balls well right of the teeth of the Monster.

Hell, I'm confident and I'll tell you about it. My team's in the Series with a chance to win -- you always have a chance. I think it's a better one than a lot of people do, but what do you guys think?

2007-10-24 11:01:12
1.   Mark T.R. Donohue's Jon Heyman has the Rockies in 7:

2007-10-24 11:03:03
2.   Mark T.R. Donohue
Chicago Tribune's Phil Rogers, Red Sox in 5:

2007-10-24 11:04:29
3.   Sam DC
Wash Post coverage:

Dave Sheinin: "Win, win, win, win, win, win, win, win, win, win, win, loss. Win, win, win, win, win, win, win, win, win, win."

Tom Boswell: "Prediction: Rockies in seven games."

Post Fact Sheet:

2007-10-24 11:13:09
4.   Xeifrank
Game #1 Win Probabilities:

Boston odds of winning Game #1
Vegas: 67.21%
Log5: 64.67%
Xeifrank's Simulator: 52.10%

I will be posting my odds for winning the World Series later on. vr, Xei

2007-10-24 12:10:30
5.   Shaun P
Rockies in 6.

Maybe its a little far-fetched, but this Serious reminds me of 1996 - and yes, I just compared the Rockies to the Yankees. Just a feeling I have.

2007-10-24 12:21:25
6.   Josh Wilker
5 : I've also thought about the Rockies as similar to the '96 Yankees. Not a good sign for the Red Sox, or for the rest of the NL West in the coming years. Jon's 6 for 6 is not a good sign either. The way I see it, Beckett's gotta put on the superhero cape again, basically: two wins and maybe even a share of a third in game 7.
2007-10-24 13:07:18
7.   Mark T.R. Donohue
5 , 6 Whoa, whoa... multiple people say the ROCKIES remind them of the YANKEES? Merciful Zeus!
2007-10-24 13:25:32
8.   Kels
The Rockies remind me of the 2006 Rockies but a year older.

Rockies in 6.

2007-10-24 13:31:09
9.   Yankee Fan In Boston
6 i agree with your assessment of what beckett needs to get done, but as stated above (0 ), he alone can't necessarily make that happen.

that is a lot to put on one guy's shoulders. people (especially here in boston) have been saying that the rockies' streak of astounding success has to end. that a regression to the mean is inevitable. by that logic, beckett is just about due to have an outing that is something closer to human than we've been seeing.

regardless of what team you root for during the dog days of summer, this series should be a blast to watch. i'm really excited.

2007-10-24 14:28:40
10.   ToyCannon
When a team outscores a team 30-5 with CC/Carmona/Westbrook going against them I don't think Beckett really needs to be on his A game for the Sox to win.
I like the Rockie story, I'll be shocked if the Sox don't pound the pitching staff.
Hoping for a competitive series with the Rockies taking care of business in Coors.
2007-10-24 14:54:31
11.   Mark T.R. Donohue
"Around the Horn":

Woody Paige- Rockies in six
Jackie MacMullan- Red Sox in six
Tim Cowlishaw- Rockies in seven
Jay Mariotti- Red Sox in six

2007-10-24 15:08:52
12.   spudrph
On Baseball Tonight, both Phillips and Kruk went with Red Sox, IIRC, but Kruk ruined his by blathering on about "experience".
2007-10-24 15:11:11
13.   spudrph
BTW, Mark, I enjoyed you on "Bleacher Bloggers". I don't know if you knew this, but Brent on that show used to co host a Nickolodeon show-one of those interstitial shows they put between episodes of cartoons-with a certifiable hottie named Candace.
2007-10-24 16:35:18
14.   RIYank
Nate Silver at Baseball Prospectus:

Red Sox in seven. (But he notes that the Rockies are 'hotter than a Time Square Rolex'.)

2007-10-24 17:13:15
15.   Bluebleeder87
I'm going with Colorado in 6.
2007-10-24 21:52:29
16.   das411
To be fair, Mark, there is from what i've heard a younger Drew that J. D. apparently spends much of his time caring for, and so that "utter lack of interest in anything besides J.D. Drew" might be juuuuust a little out of line...but hey, it's your blog. Go Rockies!

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