Thursday, March 13, 2008

Divisional Round Preview - Boston vs. Pawtucket

Lars the Greek - Cobb Times Herald

Boston Heat (#3 seed) vs. Pawtucket G-Maniacs (#2 seed)

Boston has a veteran lineup that has been there before with success. Donte Wright, Rico Estrada, Stone Duran, and Carlos Gomez anchor a solid lineup top to bottom. The G-Maniacs have a very nice contact hitting lineup that works the count with nearly every at bat. Heath Robbins, Carl Saturria, and Terrence Wheat are the standouts.
Advantage: Even

Rotation and Bullpen:
Boston has a nice rotation led by veterans Rabbit Leyritz and Matthew Pryce. The bullpen features two dominant players in Bobby Davidson and Elvis Kennedy, giving the Heat a nearly unbeatable 1-2 punch in the late innings. Pawtucket boasts a rotation of Cy Young candidates, headlined by Albert Franco, big acquistion Dean Hernandez, Kory Burrell, and Richard Sasaki. All four of them are top tier starters. Dan Hunter gets it done in the pen, but isn't as imposing as the Boston duo. Still, with the top to bottom quality of the Pawtucket starters, they get the edge.
Advantage: Pawtucket

Boston has been a playoff regular, and has won a World Series. They are also tested by the brutal divisional races seen each season in the AL Beast. Pawtucket has had an easy ride the last few season in the AL North, and have yet to prove themselves on the big stage.
Advantage: Boston

Pick: Pawtucket in Five. Pitching wins championships, and Pawtucket has it in abundance. Even if one of their starters has a bad game, the other three should be able to pick it up.

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