Major League Baseball’s Divisional Series featured the drama and Latin star power worthy of a highly related
Tele-Novela. As the tough guys get ready for the next round while the goats (yes, Elvis Andrus) go home, Latino Sports Talk reveals the 5 Novelas to follow during the League Championship Series.
5. Tres Reales, Un Camino: The Dominican starting pitching trio Johnny Cueto, Yordano Ventura and Edinson Volquez will be counted on to lead the American League defending champion Kansas City Royals into the World Series. All three have shown moments of sheer brilliance and maddening inconsistency this season. The Royals will only go as far as their reales quisqueyanos will take them.
4. Mexicanos Del Norte: Mexican Pitchers Marco Estrada and Roberto Osuna play critical roles for the Toronto Blue Jays as Game 1 starter and bullpen stopper respectively. The 32 year old Estrada has revived his career by mastering a vicious changeup this season, going 13-8 with a 3.13 ERA. In contrast, the 20 year-old Osuna went from high school to major league closer in just a few years, notching 20 Saves with a 0.92 WHIP in 2015. Look for Estrada and Osuna, nephew of former MLB reliever Antonio Osuna, to carry on the under-appreciated Mexican baseball tradition deep into the playoffs.
3. Los Jovenes de la Esperanza: Los Cachorros de Chicago have a roster of talented young players that could rival the depth of a South American beauty pageant. Can young stars like Kris Bryant, Kyle Schwarber, Jorge Soler, Hector Rondon and their ace Jake Arrieta carry the Cubs to their first World Series Championship in over 100 years? Look for Cubs Shortstop Javier Baez to stay hot after hitting huge 3-Run Homer in Game 4 of the Divisional Series while playing for injured Addison Russell.
2. La Gran Familia: The Amazin’ New York Mets led by Daniel Murphy’s game winning Home Run and base-running along with Jeurys Familia’s clutch 2 Inning Save in Game 5 win against the Dodgers are in the National League Championship Series. Will the Mets’ young aces, Yoenis Cespedes and great chemistry have la potencia to get past the powerhouse Cubs’ line-up to their first World Series since 2000?
1. Los Machos Del Campo: The American League Championship Series between arch rivals Kansas City Royals and Toronto Blue Jays will likely be determined by the play of their respective team leaders Salvador Perez and Jose Bautista. Salvy is a true field general behind the plate for the Royals and displays incredible stamina for a catcher, catching over 300 total games the last 2 seasons. Joey Bats series’ winning homer against the Texas Rangers in the Divisional Series typifies the greatness Bautista has displayed for the Blue Jays since his breakout season in 2010. Which macho will end up becoming el campeon?
Notes: Other Latino stars to watch during the League Championship Series include Chicago Cubs’ Catcher Miguel Montero, Kansas City Royals’ Shortstop Alcides Escobar, Rightfielder Alex Rios and Reliever Kelvin Herrera and New York Mets’ Shortstop Wilmer Flores, playing for injured Ruben Tejada.
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