World Series Preview and Prediction

The 2016 World Series is stacking up to be one of the greatest of all time! The powerhouse Chicago Cubs have emerged from the NL, while a post season surprise has risen from the AL in the Cleveland Indians. The Cubs have not won a World Series since 1908. To put that in perspective: sliced bread had not yet been invented, and the Titanic had not yet been built. The NBA, NHL, and NFL did not exist back in 1908. That is just how abysmal the Cubs have been. The Indians have not won since 1948, the second longest title drought. While these two teams have had many, many forgettable years, one thing is for certain: one of these teams is winning the World Series!

These two teams made the Fall Classic in a very different way. The Cubs were favorites going into the season for many. On paper they are clearly the best team in the majors, and no one looked ready to contend with them. That prediction proved to be quite right, as they steamrolled everyone in their way to a pennant. Their only road bump came when they went down 2-1 in the NLCS to the Dodgers. With their backs against the wall, the Cubs did not seem to bat an eye and won three straight games, holding the Dodgers to six runs over those last three. 

On the other hand, the Indians had a very different route. They rode a solid season behind their starters to an AL Central title. Their offense has been in the shadows of their stellar pitching even though it produced the second most runs in baseball. Of the last four teams in the AL the Indians were many people's last choice, behind Boston, Texas, and Toronto. Their arms picked them up, shutting down the Red Sox and Blue Jays explosive, run scoring offenses. 

Indians key to success: The Indians will have to take advantage of match ups that favor them. More specifically, Cleveland will have to get the Cubs starting pitchers out of the game very, very early. They have said that in Game 1 against Jon Lester they intend to run the bases. Lester hates to throw to bases and field his position. If Cleveland can make him uncomfortable by doing this, combined with their home crowd atmosphere, it may be enough to push him out of the game early and sneak a Game 1 victory.  If they continue this trend throughout the series they will stand a much better chance against the Cubs bullpen, and will have their best chance to win a title.

Cubs key to success: Keep playing Chicago Cubs baseball, it's that simple! The Cubs did not win 103 games in the regular season for no reason. By playing the same style of baseball that they have the whole year, they can win this series. Their pitching has been stellar, boasting the best team ERA in baseball this year, and their offense has done more than enough to propel the team to victory. Having Kyle Schwarber back in the lineup to DH will provide a boost where Jason Heyward has slacked. If they don't make too many changes and don't overthink a rather simple game plan, they should not have much trouble winning this series.

Prediction: The curse will be broken! After 108 years of less than successful baseball the Chicago Cubs will finally win a World Series. There is just no stopping this team; the players and fans are as hungry for a title as any team has been in history. They will ride this momentum as well as exceptional talent to victory. The Cubs will ultimately defeating the Cleveland Indians in five games, winning the series in front of their beloved fans at Wrigley Field. 

This should be a fantastic series to watch.  A long drought will be broken after it is all said and done.  Good luck to both deserving teams.