A New York Yankees vs. Los Angeles Dodgers World Series in 2020?

New York Yankees, Gleyber Torres, Gary Sanchez

The Boston Red Sox just traded away two pieces, Mookie Betts and David Price, that led them during 2018 to win the World Series. The receiving team, the Los Angeles Dodgers, just got even better. Even though the Dodgers haven’t reached that ultimate goal the last few seasons, there’s no denying that this season they are high contenders to be back in the World Series especially with the addition of Betts and Price.

The New York Yankees are the heavy favorites for the American League after picking up Gerrit Cole and are entering the season with their players healthy. The Dodgers are definitely going to be favorites of the National League, so is this the year since 1979 we see a Yankees vs. Dodgers World Series?

Both teams have stacked lineups along with the quality starting pitching. The New York Yankees are led by Aaron Judge, Gleyber Torres, and Gary Sanchez while having Gerrit Cole, Luis Severino, and James Paxton toeing the slab for them. The Dodgers have Cody Bellinger, Joc Pederson, and Justin Turner leading the lineup while Clayton Kershaw and Walker Buehler are of the premier pitchers in the league.

It’s no question that a Los Angeles vs. New York World Series would be huge for Major League Baseball. The markets that each city holds would be monumental for not only both teams, but for the MLB too. Baseball is looking for something to draw in more fans and more views, and I think an LA vs. NYC World Series could do just that.

New York Yankees vs. Los Angelas Dodgers: Who is the better team?

New York Yankees, Gleyber Torres, Gary Sanchez

Everyone is already dreaming of a World Series with the New York Yankees and the Los Angelas Dodgers. The Dodgers made a huge splash last night when they acquired former AL MVP Mookie Betts from the Red Sox in a monster trade.

The Dodgers sent Alex Verdugo to Boston and Kenta Maeda to the Twins while receiving Betts and David Price along with cash. The Dodgers are the clear winners of this trade, especially if they can eventually extend Mookie Betts long-term. However, like with anything, some folks seem to be prisoners of the moment with this deal. The Dodgers were a 106 win team last year, and they just got better offensively and defensively acquiring Mookie Betts, but there are still gaps in their roster. The New York Yankees and the Dodgers are considered the two best teams in baseball on paper, but who’s better? Let’s dive both clubs.

The Los Angelas Dodgers

Their projected lineup is incredible. I mean, look at this lineup:

RF Mookie Betts
1B Max Muncy
3B Josh Turner
CF Cody Bellinger
SS Corey Seager
LF AJ Pollock
2B Gavin Lux
C Will Smith

The Dodgers are not going to be hurting for run production in 2020. The Dodgers were already a top-five offense without Mookie Betts, adding in Betts makes them that much better. Do they have the best lineup in baseball? That is a question for debate. You could easily make that argument for the Dodgers.

Now let’s look at the problem areas for the Dodgers, and that would be their pitching. Their starting rotation isn’t bad currently projected to feature: Walker Buehler, Clayton Kershaw, David Price, and several guys vying for the last two spots in the rotation. The bullpen contains guys like Kenley Jansen, Joe Kelly, Blake Treinen, Ross Stripling, and Scott Alexander.

While they have some quality pieces, it is far fetched to say that’s a dependable pitching unit. For the bullpen, Kelly and Treinen were awful last year, and Jansen was very shaky at times. For the rotation, the Dodgers are going to be depending on Clayton Kershaw and David Price to help them win a World Series. That’s the equivalent of walking a tightrope thousands of feet up with high wind hoping to make it across. If I were a Dodgers fan, I would be going into this season with the expectations that the team will have to hit their way to a World Series title.

The New York Yankees

Without question, I believe the New York Yankees have the best roster in all of baseball at the moment. The Yankees return the highest-scoring offense in baseball with a lineup consisting of:

2B DJ LeMahieu
RF Aaron Judge
SS Gleyber Torres
LF Giancarlo Stanton
C Gary Sanchez
DH Miguel Andujar
1B Luke Voit
3B Gio Urshela
CF Brett Gardner

The New York lineup is incredible, and that’s without starting center fielder Aaron Hicks, who is out for the first half of the year while he recovers from Tommy John surgery. To go along with this lineup, the Yankees have arguably the best bullpen in baseball featuring: Aroldis Chapman, Zack Britton, Adam Ottavino, Tommy Kahnle, and Chad Green. Oh, and let’s not forget the rotation that the Yankees have, which got a slight upgrade this offseason.

The Yankees have arguably the best rotation in baseball, which is led by ace Gerrit Cole. The Yankees rotation of Cole, Luis Severino, James Paxton, Masahiro Tanaka, and J.A. Happ/Jordan Montgomery is very good. Severino has ace potential, Paxton was one of the best pitchers in baseball the second half of last season, Tanaka is a postseason wizard, and Gerrit Cole is arguably the best pitcher in baseball. Simply put, there are no holes in this Yankees roster on paper. The biggest hurdle for the Yankees will be their battle to stay healthy. The Yankees set a record for players hitting the IL last year, so in my opinion, the Yankees are their own biggest threat in 2020.

The Verdict

Let’s put these two clubs in a vacuum where nobody gets hurt this year. If players play up to their potential and stay healthy, I think the Yankees have the better lineup top to bottom. The Yankees have the better bullpen, and with the signing of Gerrit Cole, the Yankees also have the better rotation. The Yankees are the clear cut favorites to win it all in October, but the Dodgers are a dangerous team. They aren’t as dangerous or as complete as the New York Yankees. Now you can say I’m biased if you like, but if you think the Dodgers are better than the Yankees on paper, you’re wrong.

New York Yankees: Main Focus Heading into the End of Season

New York Yankees, Gleyber Torres

The New York Yankees are heading to Seattle after a series win against the best team in the National League, the Los Angeles Dodgers.

They came off a rough series in Oakland and got swept out of the city. For players weekend, the Yankees headed to Los Angeles for 3-game weekend series, which many thought would be a World Series preview. Aaron Judge homered in every game and the starting pitching proved they can help this team win big games. Paxton, German, and even Sabathia had strong starts, keeping the team in the game. Hopefully, the Yankees will have a healthy rotation and bullpen for the playoffs.

What should be the Yankees main focus for the next few months?

The Yankees’ starting pitching earned run average of 4.72 (Baseball-Reference). That ranks near the lower half of the league. However, if the offense continues to mash, this will not be a problem as long as the ERA stays where it is.

The Yankees have nearly had their whole 25-man roster on the injured list at some point during the season. The main focus has to be: get healthy. With Severino and Betances on their way back from gruesome injuries and setbacks, they will certainly help with the Yankees’ pitching inconsistency problems. Also, Luke Voit is on his way back which will push Mike Ford back to the minors. The problem is: the Yankees have constantly been awaiting the return of their key players all season. This will take time. The Yankees will have a very potent offense and an improved pitching staff when everyone comes back from injury. Especially, with home-field advantage, it will be an unprecedented series against the Houston Astros.

The New York Yankees Beat Dodgers, Show They’re the Real Deal

New York Yankees, Brett Gardner

What if I told you before the game started, Clayton Kershaw would add a loss to his record and Domingo German would go 6 solid innings for the New York Yankees, giving up only 1 run to the Los Angeles Dodgers? More than likely, you probably would’ve thought I was delusional and should never make any predictions again. Well, this just so happened on Sunday night in the gorgeous city of LA.

DJ LeMahieu led the charge in the top of the 1st by blasting a lead-off homer on the 3rd pitch, traveling 409 feet with an exit velocity of 102.9 MPH. Joc Pederson followed in the bottom of the 1st, launching an absolute missile on the 1st pitch, tying the game up. German proceeded throughout the game in a bounce-back fashion, limiting the Dodgers to 5 hits, 1 run, and 2 walks in 6 innings. He also collected 5 strikeouts and improved his overall numbers, posting a 4.03 ERA, 4.74 FIP, and a 1.14 WHIP.

In the top of the 3rd, Aaron Judge broke the tie by hammering a solo homer to deep center field, traveling 404 feet with an exit velocity of 104.6 MPH. Brett Gardner made the most of his athletic abilities in the bottom of the 3rd, leaping into the air and robbing Corey Seager of a 2-run double. This spectacular catch alone shifted the entire momentum of the game. German and Gary Sanchez also recorded a well-drawn out, strike ’em out, throw ’em out in the bottom of the 5th.

 

Mike Ford, who was 2 for 3 on the night, crushed a solo bomb to right-center field in the top of the 6th, traveling 384 feet with an exit velocity of 101.9 MPH. Adam Ottavino and Tommy Kahnle made quick work of the Dodgers offense in the bottom of the 7th, retiring the side on 3 strikeouts, including 2 nasty Wiffle ball-like sliders from Adam Ottavino. Ford continued to show off his full potential in the top of the 8th, recording an RBI double to left field. Last, but certainly not least, Gio Urshela waved his magic bat and collected an RBI flare just beyond the outfield grass.

 

The dominant, flame-throwing torch known as Aroldis Chapman, pumped gas in the bottom of the 9th. After giving up a lead-off walk, Chapman struck out Chris Taylor, Enrique Hernandez and Will Smith (not the actor Will Smith) in order, granting the New York Yankees a 5-1, victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers.

This series was intense from the moment it started, till the very end. The Yankees proved they’re not an organization to ignore and have more than ample firepower to beat the best teams in baseball. The offense performed sufficiently vs. Ryu, adequately vs. Kershaw and exposed the Dodgers’ capabilities. Cody Bellinger, who is an NL MVP candidate, was shut down the entire series and went 1 for 10 with 6 strikeouts. The starting pitching, which has been mediocre this season, held the Dodgers to 5 runs in 3 games. To put this incredible achievement into perspective, the Dodgers are 4th in the league for runs scored, while the New York Yankees starting rotation is 19th in the league.

I’m proud of this team and so should everyone else. While the endless amount of banter on social media raged on, spilling their narratives on why the New York Yankees had no chance to win the series and/or a game, the Yanks remained focused and finished the job with excellence. The Yanks now possess an 85-47 (.644) record and are tied with the Houston Astros for the best record in the American League. While the race for the Commissioner’s Trophy is far from over, seizing a 3-game series from the Dodgers is a step into the right direction.

New York Yankees: Game-Changing Grand Slam Leads to a Yankee Victory vs. Dodgers

New York Yankees shortstop, Didi Gregorius.

What. A. Game. The New York Yankees absolutely demolished the hard-hitting Los Angeles Dodgers in every single aspect of the game. The offense rose to the challenge, powering in 10 runs and a grand total of 5 homers, including a game-changing grand slam. The starting pitching and bullpen were also tremendous. James Paxton led the charge into battle, recording 6.2 strong innings and giving up 5 hits, 2 runs, no walks and 11 strikeouts on 109 pitches.

Before the game started, Hyun-Jin Ryu was the talk of the town and expected to punish the Yanks with pure and utter filth. This was not the case, as Ryu was responsible for giving up 9 hits and 7 runs in just 4.1 innings pitched. This came as a huge shock not only to the Dodgers organization but the Yankees organization as well. Before tonight’s game, Ryu accumulated a 1.64 ERA, 2.99 FIP and a 0.98 WHIP in 148.1 innings pitched. Even after the poor start, Ryu still has phenomenal and Cy Young-like stats, posting a 2.00 ERA, 3.18 FIP, and a 0.98 WHIP.

Whether people choose to believe so or not, the Yanks are a force to be reckoned with and proved a point by sending a direct message to the Dodgers. Paxton was brilliant and maintained his scorching hot performance from the beginning till the end. Paxton shut down the Dodgers offense in the 1st and 2nd innings, collecting 3 strikeouts in the process.

In the top of the 3rd, Aaron “Baj” Judge and Gary “Kraken” Sanchez led the offensive explosion by driving in two solo homers. Judge pulled his 2nd homer of the season, crushing the baseball 414 feet with an exit velocity of 108.9 MPH. Sanchez proceeded almost immediately after by hammering his 29th homer on the season and becoming the fastest catcher to reach 100 homers in MLB history. Sanchez achieved this impressive accomplishment in only 355 games. (the next fastest was Mike Piazza, who reached 100 homers in 422 games.) Adding some spice to the cake, Sanchez’s back knee touched the ground, accurately portraying Adrian Beltre.

The Dodgers only scored 2 runs in the game, with one being in the 3rd and the other in the 7th. In the bottom of the 3rd, A.J. Pollock drove in an RBI single to left field, cutting the deficit in half. The 4th inning led to no runs on either side and a spectacular pitching duel. However, the New York Yankees were out for blood in the 5th, pouring on a 5-run rally. Sir Didi Gregorius completely changed the momentum of the game, launching a grand slam at 378 feet with an exit velocity of 97.7 MPH. Brett Gardner tacked on the 5th run of the game, smacking the baseball and driving in an RBI double to left field.

As Paxton continued to demolish the Dodgers lineup, the Yanks continued their offensive production in the top of the 6th. Gleyber Torres granted the Yankees their 8th run of the game, blasting a solo homer at 389 feet with an exit velocity of 96.8 MPH. Paxton was eventually relieved by Tommy Kahnle in the bottom of the 6th, but not before picking up his 10th and 11th strikeouts of the game. Paxton has now assembled a 4.43 ERA, 4.08 FIP and a 1.43 WHIP on the season.

Enrique Hernandez recorded the last run for the Dodgers in the bottom of the 7th, driving in an RBI double to left field. In the top of the 8th and 9th innings, the New York Yankees earned 2 more runs. Judge, who was already on fire, bashed in an RBI single to left-center field in the 8th. Gregorius knocked in his 2nd homer of the night, traveling 395 feet with an exit velocity of 100.2 MPH in the 9th. Nestor Cortes Jr. closed out the game in the bottom of the 9th and sealed the deal for the Yanks, winning 10-2.

The Yankees now possess an 84-46 (.646) record and remain as the best baseball club in the American League. The Rays are 8.0 games back and the Red Sox are 15.0 games back from 1st place in the AL East.

New York Yankees: Things to Watch for the West Coast Trip

The New York Yankees will head out to the west coast for a nine game set where they’ll face the Oakland Athletics, Los Angeles Dodgers, and the Seattle Mariners.

Oakland Series

The Yankees will face the Athletic’s twice in their road trip where they’ll start off with a four-game set and then play them again at home for a three-game set following the Seattle series. The Yanks will face always dominate Mike Fiers who has an 11-3 record and is credited to a 3.46 ERA. Besides that game, the Yankees should have a pretty easy series against the A’s.

Los Angeles Series

This will be a tough series as the Yankees will take on the other best team in baseball. Scorching hot Cody Bellinger just passed the 40 home run mark for this season and seems to not be slowing down at all. This series is one of the most anticipated all year as these are two teams that could be seen facing it off in the World Series.

The Yankee rotation will have a challenge matching the strong and consistent Dodger rotation. The Dodgers’ team ERA is ranked number one among all MLB teams at 3.34 while the Yankees are ranked 15th at 4.47. However, the Yankees have the stronger bullpen. This series will come down to the battle of the lineups.

Seattle Series

The Seattle Mariners have not shown much since before the All-Star break. This should also be no problem for the Yankees and the team should expect a series win here. However, Daniel Vogelbach and Domingo Santana are a problem in the Mariners lineup who can do some damage at the plate. Ultimately, I believe this Mariners team is no match to the Yankees lineup.

New York Mets Series Preview: Los Angeles Dodgers (9/3-9/5)

The New York Mets will continue their trip through California in Los Angeles, where they will take on the Dodgers. The Mets come off a series win against the San Francisco Giants, where they were carried by their starting pitching. The Dodgers are red hot and just swept the Arizona Diamondbacks. The Dodgers also swept the Mets when they came to Queens earlier this season.

Probable Pitching Matchups

(9/3, 8:10 PM) Jacob deGrom (8-8, 1.68 ERA) vs. Alex Wood (8-6, 3.42 ERA)

(9/4, 10:10 PM) Jason Vargas (5-8, 6.56 ERA) vs. Rich Hill (6-5, 3.59 ERA)

(9/5, 7:35 PM) Zack Wheeler (9-7, 3.37 ERA) vs. Hyun-Jin Ryu (4-1, 2.24 ERA)

Solid Starting Pitching

The Mets starting pitching has been tremendous during this trip through the rotation. During the last five games, Mets starters have combined for 36.1 innings, 5 Runs and 47 strikeouts. Every starter has reached their potential during this hot streak and it will be up to the offense to decide a winner in these games. Somehow the Mets have only won three out of those five games.

Jacob deGrom takes the mound trying to continue his brilliance over the entire league. The entire Cy Young award chase surrounds three pitchers in the NL East. deGrom, Max Scherzer and Aaron Nola are the front runners to win the award. deGrom will have another tough test against a lineup that features Manny Machado, Max Muncy and Matt Kemp. deGrom has allowed three runs or less in 24 consecutive starts and has six straight starts of allowing two runs or less.

Muncy’s Emergence

With the likes of Manny Machado, Matt Kemp and Cody Bellinger in their lineup, Max Muncy has emerged out of no where to lead the Dodgers offense. He leads the team with 31 home runs and a .582 slugging percentage. Muncy only has 85 hits and 31 of them have been home runs which makes his season even more impressive.

The Dodgers incredible weekend series against the Diamondbacks catapulted them back into first place in the NL West. Despite many injuries they finally seem to have a rotation in place that can bring them back to the World Series. Clayton Kershaw has been one of those injury riddled pitchers but has still been dominant with a 2.40 ERA. Kershaw is still chasing his elusive ring and at age 30 his dominant years are slowly running out.

Matchups to Lookout For

Brian Dozier vs. Jason Vargas: 7-29 (.241) Double, 2 Walks, 7 Strikeouts

Chase Utley vs. Jacob deGrom: 4-19 (.211) Double, 4 Walks, 3 Strikeouts

Wilmer Flores vs. Alex Wood: 5-16 (.313) Double, Home Run, 2 Walks, 5 Strikeouts

Austin Jackson vs Alex Wood: 2-10 (.200) Double, 3 Strikeouts

Interesting Stats

Kevin Plawecki Batting 8th in 2018: 18-50 (.360) 4 Doubles, Triple, 3 Home Runs, 6 Walks, 13 Strikeouts

Yasiel Puig when leading off an inning in 2018: 27-76 (.355) 6 Doubles, 3 Home Runs, 13 Walks, 13 Strikeouts

New York Mets Series Preview: Los Angeles Dodgers (6/22-6-24)

The New York Mets had a disappointing end to their road trip, but return home to face the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Mets went 3-7 on their road trip and finally saw their bats come back to life. Unfortunately, the Mets pitching suffered badly in the hitter friendly conditions in Colorado. The Dodgers had a disappointing start to their season but they have a 38-35 record and are 2.5 games out of first place. The Mets lost all seven games they played against the Dodgers last season.

Probable Pitching Matchups:

(6/22, 7:10 PM) Alex Wood (2-5, 4.22 ERA) vs. Zack Wheeler (2-5, 4.82 ERA)

(6/23, 7:15 PM) Clayton Kershaw (1-4, 2.76 ERA) vs. Jacob deGrom (5-2, 1.51 ERA)

(6/24, 1:10 PM) Rich Hill (1-2, 4.99 ERA) vs. Jason Vargas (2-6, 8.60 ERA)

Hitting, But No Pitching

The Mets finally figured out how to score some runs on the road trip, but that should be taken with a grain of salt. They played in two very hitter friendly environments and have not hit well when they return to Citi Field. Jacob deGrom was able to put together a terrific start in Colorado because he is on another level right now. The Mets should look to take advantage of sub-par pitching and Kershaw opting to make a MLB start right off the DL.

The Mets made some roster moves after their final game in Colorado. They sent down Chris Flexen and Paul Sewald to Triple-A and moved A.J. Ramos to the 60-day DL. Hansel Robles was designated for assignment which made room for Kevin Kaczmarski and Drew Smith on the Mets roster. Kaczmarski was hitting .346 and Smith had a 2.88 ERA before being called up.

Dodgers Ace Has Returned

Around 5:30 on Friday, the Dodgers announced Clayton Kershaw is opting to pitch Saturday against Jacob deGrom instead of taking a rehab start. He was originally scheduled to come back on June 28 from a back injury. Kershaw vs. deGrom has the makings of a pitcher’s duel, but in his last start before heading to the DL, Kershaw’s velocity was down. He did not hit 90 mph at any point for the first time in his career.

The Dodgers have had their fair share of injuries cost them this season. Pedro Baez, Corey Seager and Kershaw headline just a few of the names that have spent time on the shelf this season. Met nemesis Chase Utley will be activated for this weekend’s series and will receive his typical welcome from the Mets fans. Matt Kemp has been healthy this season and has seen a resurgence in his game. He is hitting .322 with 12 home runs and 43 RBIs and has slowly returned to the Matt Kemp of old.

Matchups to Lookout For

Chase Utley vs. Jacob deGrom: 4-17 (.235) Double, 4 Walks, 4 Strikeouts

Wilmer Flores vs. Clayton Kershaw: 3-15 (.200) 4 Strikeouts

Chase Utley vs. Zack Wheeler: 4-15 (.267) Double, Home Run, Walk, 2 Strikeouts

Wilmer Flores vs. Alex Wood: 5-14 (.357) 2 Doubles, Home Run, 2 Walks, 5 Strikeouts

Interesting Stats

Matt Kemp w/RISP in 2018: 20-49 (.408) 3 Doubles, 4 Home Runs, 5 Walks, 9 Strikeouts

Michael Conforto at Citi Field in 2018: 13-88 (.148) Double, 2 Home Runs, 13 Walks, 28 Strikeouts