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Monday, October 03, 2005

NL Division Series

And here are the matchups for the NL.

The Central winning Cardinals will take on the Padres.

For the Padres a simultaneous offensive and defensive drop in late July led to their slide that allowed them to win their division tied with the 1973 Mets for the fewest wins by a division winner in NL history. Interestingly, they also appeared to get lucky early as evidenced by their Pythagorean winning percentage being consistently ahead of their actual winning percentage in early May. They then carried those extra wins all the way through September.

Not much to say about the Cardinals other than they were very consistent. Slight offensive and pitching slumps led to their losing a few extra games in the final weeks as they landed exactly on 100.

In the other series the Braves for the 14th straight time as winners of the East will take on the Wild Card winner Astros.

The Braves got excellent pitching early and then got hot again in mid June to overtake the slumping Nationals. The Astros had the farthest to climb of any team in teh playoffs as their miserable offense climbed from just over 3.5 runs per game in early June to end up near 4.25. Their pitching also improved markedly from mid May to mid August and then held the line the rest of the way.

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