World Series 2019 Predictions: Full Schedule and Picks for Fall Classic

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistOctober 14, 2019

Houston Astros' Carlos Correa celebrates with teammates after his walk-off home run against the New York Yankees during the 11th inning in Game 2 of baseball's American League Championship Series Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019, in Houston. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Matt Slocum/Associated Press

The current favorite to win the World Series leaves home tied in the American League Championship Series. 

Houston sits at +140 (bet $100 to win $140) at Caesars to win the Fall Classic, and they have a good chance to take a 2-1 advantage over the New York Yankees with Gerrit Cole on the hill for Game 3. 

The Astros avoided the same fate as St. Louis, who is two games behind Washington in the National League Championship Series.

Washington's dominance at Busch Stadium led to a drop in championship odds to +200. If the Nationals oppose the Astros, we could see one of the best sets of pitching matchups in World Series history.

                     

World Series Schedule

Game 1: Tuesday, October 22 (Time TBD, Fox) 

Game 2: Wednesday, October 23 (Time TBD, Fox) 

Game 3: Friday, October 25 (Time TBD, Fox) 

Game 4: Saturday, October 26 (Time TBD, Fox) 

Game 5: Sunday, October 27 (Time TBD, Fox)*

Game 6: Tuesday, October 29 (Time TBD, Fox)*

Game 7: Wednesday, October 30 (Time TBD, Fox)* 

              

Picks

Houston over Washington

Alex Gallardo/Associated Press

After its extra-inning Game 2 win, Houston is in a good position to take the ALCS. 

Cole is slated for Tuesday's Game 3, and A.J. Hinch could go to the right-hander and Justin Verlander to close out the series in Games 6 and 7. 

In two ALDS starts, Cole allowed nine players to reach base and he struck out 25 Tampa Bay hitters. 

Boston has been the only team to have postseason success versus Cole since he joined the Astros. In Game 2 of the 2018 ALCS, the Red Sox posted four runs on five hits and only fanned five times. 

That was one of the few times Cole looked vulnerable in the last 12 months. Houston has not lost in one of his starts since June 12 at Texas. 

In his last five road outings, the 29-year-old limited opponents to three earned runs on 17 hits. He set down 53 batters on strikes in that span. 

The Yankees have struck out 23 times in 77 at-bats, with 13 of those coming against Houston's starters. 

If Cole shuts down the New York bats, it guarantees the series will return to Minute Maid Park if the Yankees take Games 4 and 5. 

In that situation, the Astros would likely send Verlander and Cole to the hill to finish off the series. 

But the Astros could end the ALCS in the Bronx if their bullpen backs up whichever hurlers follow up Cole. In Game 2, Houston's relievers limited the Yankees to a single hit in 4.1 innings.

Washington's pitching could place it in the Fall Classic as early as Tuesday. Stephen Strasburg and Patrick Corbin are slated to start Games 3 and 4 at Nationals Park. 

The pair of starters went 18-4 at home in the regular season and Strasburg allowed one runner to cross the plate in his last three Nationals Park appearances. 

If St. Louis is unable to hit out of its slump, the Nationals could ride their starters to a sweep, or a 4-1 series win, which allows them to reset their rotation for the World Series. 

If both series end early, we could see Verlander or Cole versus Max Scherzer or Strasburg to open the Fall Classic. 

Those potential matchups could lead to a low-scoring World Series. In the 2017 World Series, Houston won three of its four games by scoring five runs or fewer. 

Houston's combination of dominant starters, home-field advantage and World Series experience could help it down whichever team comes out of the NLCS.

A.J. Hinch's side lost back-to-back starts by Verlander and Cole twice, owns a 64-22 home record and has plenty of key contributors left over from the title run, including George Springer, Jose Altuve and Alex Bregman.


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Follow Joe on Twitter, @JTansey90.

Statistics obtained from Baseball Reference

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