It's that time of year again: The Gavel Sports World Series predictions. The Houston Astros are the best team in baseball, but the Washington Nationals are riding the high of making it to their first World Series in franchise history. Here's what we're predicting; who ya got?
Tommy O’Brien: The Nationals were finally able to overcome their postseason demons and win a few series. Unfortunately, for them, they’re about to run out of magic. The Astros are as dominant a team this league has seen in quite some time. The lineup features seven well-above-average hitters, while starting pitchers Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole are all but guaranteed to finish first and second in the AL Cy Young race. They also feature regular season MVP candidate Alex Bregman who only hit .167 in the ALCS. Don’t expect that to last as this juggernaut offense is just waiting to explode. Too much depth. Too much talent. The Astros are too good. Houston in five.
Joe Birdsall: While Washington’s postseason success without Bryce Harper has been incredibly surprising, the upstart Nationals simply do not have what it takes to upset the 107-win Astros. A stacked pitching staff consisting of Justin Verlander, Gerrit Cole, and Zack Greinke, along with a lineup of talented hitters like José Altuve, Alex Bregman, George Springer, and Carlos Correa, will give Houston its second World Series title in the last three years. Prediction: Astros in five.
Sydney Woolf: Despite my beloved Yankees suffering a heart-wrenching series loss to the Astros, I have to give credit where credit is due. With the best regular season record in baseball, it’s no wonder the Astros have continued to control the game into the postseason. Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole have given remarkable pitching performances in the postseason, combining for 61 strikeouts thus far with more to come. As for the offense, José Altuve crushed my dreams on Saturday night while continuing to crush the ball, batting an impressive .349 in the playoffs. As much as I’d love to see the scrappy Nationals team come out with their first World Series win, I don’t think they’ll have it this year against a preeminent Astros team. Stros in five.
Emma Twombly: This isn’t fun or unpredictable, but I have the Astros winning the 2019 World Series. On a serious note, the Astros have the best regular season record, the best offense, and made deep playoff runs the past two seasons, winning it all in 2017 and losing to the eventual champs, the Red Sox, in 2018. Plus, José Altuve’s walk-off home run to send them there was pretty cool. I’m mostly just glad they took down the Yankees. So, Astros in six over the Nationals.
Lillie Clifton: As a Red Sox fan, I’ve been on the Astros bandwagon from the first pitch of the ALCS against the Yankees. Needless to say, thank you José Altuve. Despite finishing second in the NL East, the Nationals have been on fire in the postseason. I believe that this series will be extremely entertaining and will see some of the best pitching matchups in the Fall Classic in some time. Ultimately, I feel the Astros will win in six and Alex Bregman will take home the MVP, built off of an incredible series in the box and in the field. Prediction: Astros in six.
Jake McNeill: The Houston Astros are the team of destiny this year. As much as we all want to believe in the Cinderella story of the Washington Nationals losing their star Bryce Harper to Philly and then going on to bring D.C. its first World Series, the Astros are just too loaded. Their offense is unstoppable, their pitching rotation is full of aces, the Nationals just don’t have the star power (or payroll) to keep up.
Andy Towriss: While I'd love the irony of the Nationals winning a World Series after letting Bryce Harper go, I'm a bigger fan of the team that steamrolled the Yankees. I'm going with the Astros in what should be an exciting series. Astros in six.