Baseball in October is just another way of saying that the postseason has arrived. As each team has completed its long 162 games regular season, the top five teams from each league advance to the playoffs where they compete for the prestigious World Series trophy. The 2018 World Series champions, the Boston Red Sox, won't get a chance to defend their title as they didn't have strong enough of a record to make the postseason. With the 2019 regular season now over, here are predictions for the 2019 postseason.

A's lose in the wild-card game for the second consecutive year

Last year, the A's surprised everyone by making the playoffs as they clinched the second wild-card spot. They faced the Yankees where they lost to a powerful Yankees lineup 7-2 and didn't score their first run until the sixth inning. Regarding how their pitching went in the wild card game, the Athletics started Liam Hendriks as an opener where he gave up two runs which came off an Aaron Judge home run and they used six different pitchers with Lou Trivino throwing the most innings with three.

This year, they find themselves in the same spot in October, but instead of playing the Yankees, they'll be playing the Rays in Tampa. The Rays have announced that Charlie Morton will be starting the wild card game and the A's combined to bat .233 (28 for 120) off Morton. Of any Athletics player, Khris Davis has the most at-bats (21) against Morton where he's gotten only three hits off him although two of those hits were homers.

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Morton had the best season of his career as he went 16-6 with a career-best 3.05 E.R.A. in 194 2/3 innings pitched with a career-high 240 strikeouts. Meanwhile, Athletics manager Bob Melvin had a hard time deciding who was going to start for his team in the wild-card game as he doesn't have great starting pitchers to choose from but ultimately agreed with Sean Manaea. Manaea most likely won't be able to go too deep as he only made five starts this season as he missed most of the year with a shoulder injury.

With the lack of quality pitching the Athletics have and the fact that Oakland is facing one of the better pitchers in the major leagues this year, the Athletics will be packing their bags after one postseason game and will be looking forward to next year.

Yankees sweep Twins

This matchup should see a ton of home runs as the Yankees have hit the most home runs by any team in the history of baseball with 305 while the Twins trailed the record by one home run by hitting 304.

While both sides possess a ton of power in their lineup, the Yankees should be able to cruise through the ALDS with ease.

The Yankees have arguably the most dangerous lineup in the league. Their lineup is balanced with average and power in which some players can hit for both. Gleyber Torres surprisingly hit the most home runs on the team with 38 but that's not to forget that the Yankees have Stanton, Judge, Voit, Encarnacion, and Sanchez in their lineup who combined to hit 97 home runs this season with all of them missing a good amount of time to injury.

Home runs aren't everything though which is proven by the fact that the Yankees have eight guys who hit .270+ with D.J. LeMahieu leading the way with an average of .329, good for second-best in the American League.

While the Twins have a powerful lineup, the Yankees pitching staff will be able to shut it down, especially their bullpen. The Yankees three starting pitchers will most likely be Tanaka, Paxton and possibly Severino and they have all done pretty well in their careers vs. the Twins. Tanaka has limited the Twins to bat just .207 (23 for 111) off him while the Twin's most powerful hitter, Nelson Cruz has struggled against Tanaka managing just three hits in 27 career at-bats. Paxton, who's been on a tear since the all-star break, has only given up four home runs to Twins batters while Severino has only given up one which was to Marwin Gonzalez who may not even be in the starting lineup. The Yankees also have a strong bullpen with the likes of Aroldis Chapman, Adam Ottavino, Zach Britton, Chad Green and others that will make it difficult for Twins batters to get hits.

Dodgers ousted in NLDS

The Dodgers have won their division for seven years straight and have reached the World Series for two years straight yet they haven't won a World Series title since 1988. This year, the Dodgers won't even reach the World Series as they'll fall apart in the NLDS to the Nationals.

The Nationals have a deep rotation that posses Cy Young candidates Max Scherzer and Stephen Strasburg as well as Patrick Corbin who's a very good major league pitcher. Between those three, the Dodgers have combined to bat .224 (97 for 434) and have struck out 152 times against those three pitchers. The Dodgers also have a steady rotation that posses Cy Young candidates Clayton Kershaw, Walker Buehler, and Hyun-Jin Ryu but the Nationals haven't had as much trouble facing those guys as the Dodgers had faced the Nationals trio. Nationals hitters have combined to bat .242 (95 for 392) off of Kershaw, Buehler, and Ryu and have only struck out Nationals batters a combined 89 times with both Buehler and Kershaw giving up more hits than strikeouts when it comes to Nationals batters.

The Nationals don't possess any elite bullpen arms but have a lot of bullpen depth which sets them up well for the postseason. On the other side, the Dodgers bullpen has been a weak spot for the team the whole year.

It will be another disappointing postseason for the Dodgers which will bring up lots of questions for the team going into the off-season like if a managerial change is needed, do the Dodgers need to go out and acquire or sign a big-time player, should they dangle one of their young and upcoming prospects for an established player and many other questions that will arise.

Braves and Cardinals go the distance

In any sport, game seven is when the stakes are at its highest as the winner moves on and the loser goes home. The Braves and Cardinals face off in the NLDS, and they will go to the final game of the series which will be game five in this case.

The Braves and Cardinals have very similar teams. Both have mediocre rotations as each possesses two durable top of the rotation pitchers but faces a dropoff after those two. The Braves have Dallas Keuchel who will be starting game one, and they also have Mike Soroka. In 19 starts this season, Keuchel posted a 3.75 E.R.A. but had an opponent average of .265, his highest since 2013.

Meanwhile, Soroka went 13-4 with a 2.68 E.R.A. but is not one that generates tons of strikeouts. The Cardinals have Jack Flaherty who was on an absolute tear in the second half of the season with a record of 7-2 and a ridiculous E.R.A. of 0.91. That's not to forget that he struck out 124 batters and only gave up 48 hits in 99 1/3 innings pitched. The Cards also have Dakota Hudson who went 16-7 with a 3.35 E.R.A. but like Soroka, doesn't have the stuff to get a lot of strikeouts.

The Braves then have Fried and Teheran who at times did well but also had their rough moments during the season and the Cardinals have Mikolas and Wainwright who aren't fantastic by any means. The Braves and Cardinals also have similar bullpens, but the Cardinals get the slight edge.

On the offensive side, the Braves have a solid core of Acuna Jr, Albies, Freeman, and Donaldson but don't have a ton of firepower after that. The Cardinals rely on Goldschmidt and Ozuna to do most of the work with the bat, but they do have guys like Wong, Edman, Molina, and DeJong who can perform well to a certain extent.

This series will be a close one, closer than any series of the 2019 MLB postseason but the Braves will walk away with the victory in game five which will send them to the NLCS.

Astros/Braves meet in World Series

The Astros and Braves are two of the most dynamic and electric teams in the league and this World Series matchup will be one for the ages. Both teams possess an electrifying young core that will be the focus of their respective teams for years as the Braves have Ronald Acuna Jr, Ozzie Albies, Freddie Freeman and Mike Soroka while the Astros have Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman, George Springer, Carlos Correa, and Yordan Alvarez.

Acuna had a season to remember as he came just three stolen bases of a 40/40 season. In total, he slashed .280/.365/.518 with 41 home runs and 101 RBIs. Freeman had another excellent season (as usual) as he slashed .295/.389/.549 with a career-high 38 home runs and 121 RBIs meanwhile Albies slashed .295/.352/.500 with 24 home runs and 189 hits.

Bregman has a real shot at winning MVP as he slashed .296/.423/.592 with 41 home runs and 112 RBIs. Alvarez broke onto the scene when he made his major league debut in June as he slashed .313/.412/.655 with 27 home runs and 78 RBIs. Springer had the best season of his career as he finished the season with a career-best slash line of .292/.383/.591 and hit a career-high 39 home runs and a career-best 96 RBIs. Both Correa and Altuve missed time with injury this season, but that didn't stop them from putting up strong numbers as Altuve slashed .298/.353/.550 with a career-high 31 home runs while Correa slashed .279/.358/.568 with 21 home runs in 75 games.

The Braves pitching has no business in matching up with the Astros pitching as the Astros have Verlander, Greinke, and Cole, arguably the best rotation in the major leagues. The Astros bullpen is significantly better than the Braves as the Astros have an elite closer in Roberto Osuna and also have Ryan Pressly, Will Harris, and Joe Smith. Meanwhile, the Braves don't have a set closer and have had the bullpen struggle as a whole throughout the season.

The Astros are that good and will win the World Series in five games. The Braves are good enough that they could very well win a game but aren't good enough to take down the Astros. This World Series matchup between the Braves and Astros could be the first of more to come as both teams are dynasties in the making.

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