In this Piece Rob will examine the 2011 World series from a historical, statistical and tactical point of view.
In the 2011 regular season, St. Louis finished six games behind Texas. From 1905 through the 2011 MLB League Championship round, when MLB teams trailed their best-of-7 playoff series opponents by six regular-season games, they have posted a 4-7 (.364) best-of-7 series record in those series against those opponents. The St. Louis Cardinals in general have a 2-2 best-of-7 MLB playoff series record against opponents whom they trailed by six regular-season games losing to the 1928 MLB Finals to the New York Yankees and winning the 1964 MLB Finals over the New York Yankees they then lost the 1968 MLB Finals to the Detroit Tigers, Then winning, the just finished 2011 National League Championship Series over the Milwaukee Brewers. For Texas this is the fourth best-of-7 playoff series, and the 27th for St. Louis. In best-of-7 playoff series, Texas has a 2-1 series record, a 0-1 Finals series record, and a 1-2 Game 1 record, while St. Louis has a 15-11 series record, a 10-7 Finals series record, and a 9-17 Game 1 record. This Series is the first best-of-7 match up between the Texas Rangers and the St. Louis Cardinals. So now that we have a nice historical point of view, lets get to the on field criteria. This is the second straight appearance for Texas. Last season they ran into the San Francisco Giants and were unable to get past what was a solid Giants pitching staff that was led By Tim Lincecum and a Giants bullpen that had the lowest earned run average in the Majors. This year they will not face nearly the same type of pitching as after they face Cardinals ace Chris Carpenter its gets tough for the Cardinals to navigate through the potent Texas lineup. This years Rangers staff is without star lefty Cliff Lee. However, with the emergence of CJ Wilson as the ace of the staff and some gutsy performances by C. Lewis and D. Holland the Rangers were able to surprise folks and make it back here. In the hitting department both teams have explosive offenses capable of big innings. In fact The 39 total runs by the Texas Rangers in the 2011 ALCS are the most ever in a best-of-7 MLB Semifinals series requiring six games, surpassing the previous high of 38 runs also set by the Texas Rangers, in the 2010 ALCS. Those 39 total runs by Texas are the third-most in a best-of-7 MLB playoff series. The 30 total runs in Milwaukee by the St. Louis Cardinals in the 2011 NLCS sets a new record for most road runs scored in a best-of-7 MLB Semifinals series, beating the previous record of 29 total road runs set by the Florida Marlins in the 2003 National League Championship Series. Texas is led by Josh Hamilton and N. Cruz, and has a lineup that can hurt you from top to bottom with no easy outs. The Cardinals have Albert Pujols who at one point was hitting an incredible .646 in the NLCS. The Cardinals lineup, while not as talented statistically as Texas can also cause problems with their timely hitting and unselfish play, when it comes to Tony Larussa and his small ball mentality. He may have an edge particularly at home over Texas manager Washington is this department. Larussa will have to use his wits here in this series to try and offset what looks to be an overall talent edge by Texas. There's no surprise here that even with home field the Vegas oddmakers have made the Cardinals the underdog. In closing this should be a very entertaining series. While most series are controlled by Pitching, this one seems to be more of a whose at the plate last type of series. Look for Texas to shed the grief of last years World series loss and emerge 2011 World Series Champions. I hope you enjoyed this preview. Enjoy the World Series and best of luck on all your Selections this season. Rob Vinciletti is one of the nations leading analysysts year in and year out using his cutting edge Power systems. Rob enjoyed his third straight winning season in combined College and Pro football in 2010, finishing 24 games over .500. In NFL he is 25 games over .500 the past 2+ seasons. You can listen to Rob and get a solid free selection, weekly on his sports talk radio segment on Monday nights at 7:05 eastern. Listen online at 88.9 wsia.fm. Best of luck and Enjoy the Series. RV
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