With one week left to go in the 2020 MLB season, here are five first-round postseason matchups that would be great for the game of baseball.
With just one week to go in this shortened 2020 MLB season, we are getting closer to knowing what our matchups will be in the best-of-three first round, to be hosted by the higher-seeded team in each matchup. While it figures to be fun regardless, there are certain matchups that would be a dream for MLB. Here, we look at five that we would love to see.
What would be some great matchups?
Athletics vs. Astros
Assuming Houston gets in, whoever they draw in the first round will suddenly have tons of new fans from everywhere outside of southern Texas. Yet a matchup with division rival Oakland would have its own great storylines. The A’s have somewhat challenged the Astros for AL West supremacy over the past couple of seasons but haven’t quite been able to pass them in the standings until this year. Would the A’s dispatch the Astros once and for all? Or would Houston still prove it has AL West supremacy?
White Sox vs. Indians
These two teams have been going at it for a long time, yet it’s not a rivalry that has had much intensity to it recently, especially given the fact that the White Sox haven’t been good. I think that if these two teams were to be paired in a postseason matchup, it would fuel this rivalry quite a bit. One major plotline would be Shane Bieber, who everyone is anxious to see pitch in the postseason, going up against this young, up-and-coming White Sox offense. This could potentially be a great matchup for MLB.
Cubs vs. Reds
These two teams clearly don’t like each other and have had their share of altercations through the years, including one at Great American Ballpark earlier this year. The intensity of these games would be huge, but it would be a big step forward in building up this rivalry. Despite there being a lot of history between these two teams, there haven’t been many seasons when both have been good, and unfortunately, there aren’t many great pennant races to talk about between the two. This matchup certainly would ignite things.
Dodgers vs. Giants
One of baseball’s oldest and most intense rivalries would write a new chapter if the Giants were to capture the eighth and final NL playoff position and earn a date with the heavily favored Dodgers. Imagine the Dodgers, MLB’s elite team with their sights set on nothing short of a World Series, right out of the gate having to get by the Giants in a three-game series. Again, the Dodgers would be huge favorites, but anything can happen in a two-out-of-three scenario. Can Clayton Kershaw come through in his first postseason start?
Padres vs. Anybody
Actually, we’d love to see a Dodgers-Padres matchup, but that likely wouldn’t happen until the second round as these two teams are likely to hold the first and fourth NL playoff positions. In any case, the Padres are going to be one of the most talked-about teams heading into the postseason, despite the fact that they haven’t been there since 2006, as they made a ton of deadline moves and have played with a little bit of cockiness this year. All eyes will be on Mike Clevinger, as the Padres gave up a good chunk of their farm system to get him.