Sunday, January 23, 2005

I love this stuff

Some brilliant writer on one of the baseball sites:

"and until Hendry nabs a bona fide closer, his Cubs are good enough to win the NL Central but not good enough to reach the World Series..."

I guess I see what he is trying to say. But isn't any team that makes it to the playoffs theoretically good enough to make it to the WS. All you have to do is get hot for 7 games once you are in.


  1. Sometimes I think that's okay to say...I mean, did the Twins really have a reasonable shot at the WS this year? You need something more than a single brilliant pitcher to win a playoff series. They made it to the playoffs on account of their crappy division -- they were 46-30 (.605) against their division, 35-33 (.515) against everyone else. Since they had to play that "everyone else" in the playoffs, they'd have to be extraordinarily lucky to make it to the WS.

    But that's the AL Central. The NL Central is a different story,

  2. True enough. The Twins would have had to beat the Yanks and the Sox and Santana was their main man.

    That being said, if they had won game 4 which Santana pitched brilliantly, well anything could have happened in game 5. Then in game 1 of the LCS, they could have beat a hurt Schilling, Santana could have outpitched Pedro in game 2 and from there, who knows. Not likely, but possible.

    The Cubs have Wood, Kerry and Zambrano so it is entirely conceivable those guys step it up and win a LCS.

  3. Um yeah, that's supposed to say Prior, Wood and Zambrano, but you know what I meant....

  4. Let's not forget the 2003 Red Sox. We were 1 game away from WS without a bona fide closer. Now some might argue the big difference between 2003 and 2004 is Schilling and Foulke (bona fide closer) but if you remember game 7 in 2003 wasn't an issue with our bull pen or closer for that matter.

    That being said, maybe if we had a Foulke in 2003, Grady would have been more willing to go to the bull pen instead of leaving Pedro in?! Who knows?!

  5. That is a valid point, but the Sox may actually have been favored in that Series. Maybe not, but it was close.

    The real point was that it was ridiculous for a writer to claim the Cubs could win the NL Central (a touch division as Jesse pointed out) but not make it to the World Series (the writer wasn't even saying win the WS he was saying make to the WS.

    In addition to the 3 stud pitchers noted, who will the be playing in the playoffs? Of course we don't know the matchups, but the representative of NL West will likely be the weakest playoff team in NL. And the Braves are the favorites in the East. Lets for now assume the Cards win either the central or the WC. The Cubs will play either the West (Dodgers, Giants ??) or the Braves or the Marlins.

    With Wood, Prior and Zambrano they should be able to beat (or be damn close) to any of those teams. Toughest matchup may be FLA if they have healthy AJ Burnett, Beckett, Dontrelle and Al Leiter. But if the Cubs are to win that series it won't be because they don't have a closer - it will probably be that they don't have the bats. Alou is gone, Sosa and Nomar, who knows which guy will show up.

    And then they may play STL to get to the WS - as we saw, the Cards can be shut down by strong pitching.

    I guess my point (now at the point of a ramble), was that the writer made a statement that was really ridiculous. And as an observer of the Cubs, I would say that their flaw heading into the season is not the bullpen (true it needs some upgrading, but they can always get that help from say, Detroit), but their questinable offense.