San Diego Padres third baseman Manny Machado, right, celebrates with relief pitcher Josh Hader (71) after the Padres defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers 5-3 in Game 4 of a baseball NL Division Series, Saturday, Oct. 15, 2022, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

Underdogs Shock MLB Playoffs

The surprises so far during the MLB postseason have been nothing short of shocking. With one game left until the American League Championship Series is set, the bracket looks different than expected. The Houston Astros are taking care of business, but the same can’t be said for some other squads.

Underdogs on Top

Currently, the NLCS features two squads that were given minimal chances to beat their Divisional Series opponents. The Philadelphia Phillies will take on the San Diego Padres for the National League Pennant. Moreover, their side of the bracket saw the likes of the Mets, Dodgers and Braves, who were all eliminated by these two teams.

Hot at the Right Time

The Padres have no doubt had the hardest route to the NLCS as underdogs. San Diego has faced two 100-plus win teams this postseason in the New York Mets and Los Angeles Dodgers. The Padres defeated the Mets in a best of three series in the wild card round and beat the Dodgers in four games in the NLDS. Centerfielder Trent Grisham leads the way for San Diego offensively batting .381 with three homers this postseason. Also, third baseman Manny Machado has notched two home runs in the playoffs. On the mound, Joe Musgrove holds a 1.38 era allowing only seven hits with 13 strikeouts.

The Phillies took down the St. Louis Cardinals and NL East champion Atlanta Braves on the way to the NLCS. Designated hitter Bryce Harper leads the way for Philadelphia batting .435 with three home runs in the postseason. The 2021 MVP went 8-for-16 with two home runs and five RBI’s in the NLDS.  Brandon Marsh, J.T. Realmuto and Rhys Hoskins have each gone yard, as well.

One Spot Left

With the Astros waiting patiently, the Yankees and Guardians will battle in the Bronx in game five to decide who will compete for the American League pennant. Cleveland will look to be the third underdog team to reach the Championship Series. Concerning for the Yankees, Aaron Judge is batting .125 this postseason with nine strikeouts. He’s only recorded two hits in four games with one of them being a two-run shot in game three. Third baseman Jose Ramirez leads the offense for the Guardians batting .348 in the playoffs. Rookie left fielder Steven Kwan has stepped up alongside others in a complete team effort by the Guardians.

The World Series is almost upon us, and if the playoffs so far have been any indication, we’re in for a dramatic end to the season.




About Jack Alperstein

Jack Alperstein is currently a sophomore at the University of Florida studying Sports Journalism.

Check Also

MLB Spring Training Opens – Justin Verlander Talks Being With Mets

After missing the 2021 season recovering from Tommy John surgery, then helping steer the Houston …