We remember the days when the Sports Illustrated baseball preview issue would arrive in the mail and we would read it cover to cover. It’s truly one of the best things each spring. It still is, except our subscription to the magazine disappeared when costs got cut around the house. I really miss the scout-speak stuff they threw in though.
Sports Illustrated has gotten a little bit cute with their Baseball Preview issue in recent years. We all remember years back when they said the Astros would win the World Series in 2017. Then no, it was going to be last year that the Astros won the World Series, they declared last year.
So this year, they’ve decided that their confusing prediction years ago about the Astros is no more. In fact, the Los Angeles Dodgers are beating the Cleveland Indians in the 2017 World Series, they say.
In predicting success for even the best baseball teams, there’s usually a caveat: If they stay healthy. They’ll win the division, if they stay healthy. They’ll go deep in the playoffs, if they stay healthy.
But that caveat may not apply to the Dodgers. In 2016, they set an all-time MLB record for players sent to the disabled list, with 28—even losing the best pitcher in the known universe, Clayton Kershaw, for more than two months—yet still won 91 games and made it to the NLCS. This season they’re even deeper, expecting a full season from Rich Hill and more innings from maturing ace-in-waiting Julio Urías, with plenty of capable fill-ins for the back of the rotation. Manager Dave Roberts has brought a calm, upbeat energy and helped soothe a once-testy clubhouse, and runaway 2016 Rookie of the Year winner Corey Seager is the highlight of a stacked lineup. Then, of course, there’s the $236 million payroll, which certainly doesn’t hurt. While the Dodgers haven’t won the World Series since 1988, they’ve won the NL West en route to the playoffs four years in a row. Keep going to the barber, and eventually you’ll get a haircut. (The same could be said of SI’s World Series picks—surely one of these years we’re bound to be right.)
So there you have it. Sports Illustrated declares that if they throw enough shit at the wall, eventually it will stick.
We actually really like this prediction and agree on the champ; that said, the Indians are not going back to the World Series.