by Ben Burns
The year of 2020 has reminded us that anything is possible. In the NBA,the fifth seeded Miami Heat took down #1 Milwaukee and are now one win away from advancing to the Finals. In the NHL, the Dallas Stars upset favored Colorado (and Vegas) to advance to the Finals. Should we also expect an unlikely entry in this year's World Series?
With the short season and the new playoff format, I'd say it's entirely possible, perhaps even likely, that we'll have an "unexpected" team playing for the title.
The Dodgers are favored and for good reason. They're stacked. Anything can happen in a series though and they're certainly not a sure thing to represent the National League. They could face a tough Reds team in the first round. The Padres and Braves are both playing well. Atlanta recently learned that it will get Fried back for the playoffs. The Cubs can't be counted out, particularly if they draw over-achieving Miami in the first round.
The Yankees may be favored in the American League but they won't have an easy road ahead of them. Indeed, the AL is wide open. with any team capable of stepping up. Tampa, Oakland and Minnesota are currently the top three seeds but the White Sox and Indians are also tough. Even Toronto, though young, is capable of getting hot at the right time.
At this time, with the brackets not quite finalized, I'm willing to make only one prediction. Like everything else in 2020, the playoffs promise to at least be "interesting." Once the matchups are set, I'll report back with some further thoughts. Until then, enjoy the final few days of the regular season.