Monday, April 30, 2007

World Series Champions

This comes as shocking news to baseball fans around the world. The Montreal Expos have won the World Series. No one even predicted they'd make the playoffs after a very slow start to the season when the team went 10-13 in their first 23 games. With the loss of veteran starter Mike Simmons for the first 2 months, fans were extremely pessimistic about the teams chances, especially with Syracuse and Philadelphia's explosive start to the year.

The Expos eventually picked it up and went on an amazing run going 30-12 in the following games, looking like last years team (108-54). The most important factor was the offense. Eugene Harris (.290, 52 HR, 176 RbI's), Hector Mareina (.313, 26 HR, 99 RBI's), and Timothy Black(.299, 34 HR, 99 RBI's) were no surprises. Don Takada and Matt Lee, on the other hand, were huge surprises. They both had a career numbers. Takada (.314, 45 HR, 164 RBI's) and Lee (.331, 20 HR and 97 RBI's). They were criticized for not playing at their potential and the media wasn't shy to show it after an early departure from the playoffs last season. Other notable offensive player was Jesse Bagley. He was also an important addition to the first team in the regular season and in the playoffs, replacing injured Hector Mareina.

Last Years CY Young winner, Dario Christensen, had a very disappointing season with numbers nowhere close to the award, where he finished with a 12-10 record and a 5.05 Era. Ask any veteran players and they will tell you that clinching a playoff spot is like the re-birth of a season, and that's exactly how Christensen felt as he posted a 4-0 record with a 3.70 Era. Throughout the history of baseball, not a lot of players have come back from an injury to then put up the best numbers of their careers. Just ask Mike Simmons. He went 11-6 in the season with 3.31 ERA but was clearly the reason why the Montreal Expos won the WS, beating the toughest offensive teams. Two of those wins came vs the heavily favorite Jackson BK in the finals. The 4-1 and 1.88 ERA (averaging 6 2/3 innings a start) that Simmons posted are numbers that legends produce.

Now the Expos will try to build on this WS title as the competition will get tougher and tougher every year. This just shows you that any team that makes the post season, even a 2nd seated wild card team, can win the glorious award.

1 comment:

Domingo said...

i'm sure Rusty Staub and the rest of the original Expos are very proud