20 October 2016

Indians Punch Ticket, Await Dodgers or Cubs

This post is one in a series about the 2016 MLB Playoffs and World Series.

The Cleveland Indians disposed of the Toronto Blue Jays in five games, blazing a trail to the Fall Classic for the first time in almost two decades. They await the winners of the NLCS, in which the Cubs knotted up the Los Angeles Dodgers and reclaimed their NL frontrunner status. The NL pennant is now a best-of-three series that will include at least one more game in Chicago.

With their pennant, the Indians push their World Series expectancy to 46%, their best this postseason and the second-best mark posted by any playoff team so far. The Dodgers and Cubs find themselves in essentially the same place they were when the series was tied 1-1: with the Cubs heavy favorites due to their superiority on paper.

My simulator predicts 2:1 that the Cubs will win out, closing the book on the NLCS in six games and propelling the North Siders to the World Series for the first time since 1945. That said, the Dodgers' 37% chance of winning in either six or seven is nothing at which to sneeze. Tomorrow, we'll wake up to see either the Dodgers as moderate favorites or the Cubs as big ones. Which one will it be?

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