Opinion: Give the NFL a rest and enjoy MLB postseason

Matt Poe

The NFL has turned into one of the largest and most profitable corporations in the world. A survey conducted by the Harris Poll proclaimed the NFL the most popular league for its 30 consecutive year. Although popularity and profit are at an all-time high, controversy seems to follow the NFL everywhere now. Look no further than this past Monday’s game which ended in an illegal play that resulted in the Detroit Lions coming up just short against the Seattle Seahawks.

So, for the next week, put the NFL aside. Forget about how we’re still discussing the wretched saga that is Deflategate, forget Monday night’s blown call and forget what is shaping up to be another season of struggle for the Browns. Instead, turn your attention elsewhere and prepare yourself for the magic that is Major League Baseball’s postseason.

There is no shortage of storylines for the MLB postseason and it has the potential to be one of the best in recent memory. The American League consists of two heavyweights in Toronto and Kansas City, known for their offense and defense, respectively. The Toronto Blue Jays have made the playoffs for the first time since winning the World Series in 1993 and are the favorites to win it all, led by MVP front-runner Josh Donaldson.

The Kansas City Royals are a favorite team to emerge from the AL, hoping to rekindle the magic from last year that sent them to Game 7 of the World Series, but ultimately saw them fall short of winning it all.

The National League is much more difficult to predict. The NL Central achieved history when the three teams with the best record in baseball all came from the same division. Two of those teams, the Chicago Cubs led by Cy Young candidate Jake Arrieta and the Pittsburgh Pirates led by former MVP Andrew McCutchen, play in the one game Wild Card Wednesday night. It’s a shame that after 162-game regular season, one of these teams will be eliminated by Wednesday night. The winner will take on the difficult task of facing the St. Louis Cardinals, who won the division (again) after winning 100 games this season.

The series with the potential for the most excitement is the New York Mets and Los Angeles Dodgers. The Mets are stocked with talented young pitchers such as Matt Harvey and Jacob DeGrom and boast one of the the hottest bats in the game in Yoenis Céspedes. The Dodgers meanwhile feature the best pitcher combination in baseball with Cy Young winners Zack Greinke and Clayton Kershaw who can make grown men cry with respective pitching abilities.

When the NFL playoffs come around, we usually have a good bet who will be left standing. Look no further than last year when both No. 1 seeds made the Super Bowl. What makes postseason baseball so great is its unpredictability. Hardly anyone thought the two Wild Card teams last year, San Francisco and Kansas City, would meet for the World Series. Critics and fans tend to think they have it all figured out when the postseason begins. By the time the MLB postseason ends, most of us couldn’t have been anymore wrong with our predictions, but that’s what makes it such a fun ride.

Contact Matt Poe at [email protected].