Pitcher List’s 2021 Postseason Predictions

How will the playoffs shake out? The Pitcher List staff takes their best guesses!

It’s been a long season: Teams have played 162 games, and the matchups are now settled. Let’s take a look at who 47 Pitcher List staffers think will raise the trophy at the end of October, as well as who wins each matchup along the way.


Who Will Win the AL Wild Card Game?

Our staff does not have much faith in Nathan Eovaldi after his 7 ER blowup vs. the Yankees a few weeks back. Will Gerrit Cole overcome his 4.91 ERA vs. Boston this season? 74% of our staff says yes.


Who Will Win the NL Wild Card Game?

The ghost of Adam Wainwright will take the mound against the ghost of Max Scherzer. Wait, they’re both still amazing? Yup. Two aces over 35 will take the hill tomorrow night. The Dodgers attempt to avoid a first-round exit after 106 regular-season wins, while the Cardinals try to continue their devil magic September run following 17 consecutive wins last month. Our staff is betting heavily on the Dodgers, with their multiple-time Cy Young winner and their otherworldly lineup.


Who Will Advance to the ALCS?

Regardless of who wins tonight in Boston, our staff does not think they’ll be playing much more baseball. Tampa Bay is the best team in the American League, managed by the best in the game in Kevin Cash. The Rays are perpetually underrated and we overwhelmingly believe they’ll advance to the ALCS.

The Astros-White Sox series will be full of fireworks; both teams can put up runs in bunches and keep runs off the board with stellar pitching staffs. Both of these teams are strong World Series contenders, but our staff is putting their money on Lucas Giolito, Lance Lynn, Tim Anderson, and company over what could be Carlos Correa’s last games as an Astro.


Who Will Advance to the NLCS?

Just like in the first round, the Cardinals appear to be an afterthought for our staff, preferring to look to the multiple 100-game winners in the NL West. It’s fairly split, but the money appears to be on the Giants, even without Brandon Belt, to advance to the NLCS and send the defending champions home early.

The Braves won a fairly uncompetitive NL East and get the pleasure of facing off with arguably the best pitching staff in baseball, headlined by Corbin Burnes, Brandon Woodruff, and Freddy Peralta (don’t forget Adrian Houser and Eric Lauer). The offense will have to move mountains if Milwaukee is going to advance, but our staff is betting on Luis Urías and Willy Adames continuing to carry the load for the Brew Crew.


Who Will Advance to the World Series?

Here is where things finally begin to split. As you can see, the staff has no faith in Boston or St. Louis to repeat the 2004 World Series in 2021, but there are heavy, heavy bets on Tampa and Chicago to emerge from the AL and Milwaukee and the Dodgers to emerge from the NL. Houston and New York make up the final 30% of picks, though the Yankees have an extremely difficult road to get there if they want to get to their first World Series in 12 years.

Interestingly, we have a higher percentage of picks for LA to get to the World Series than SF, but SF has more picks in the prior round. Perhaps people think San Fran is good, but not good enough to contend for the World Series in an odd year.


Who Will Win the World Series?

That dark blue 25.5% that Google Forms cut off is the Dodgers. Although they were not picked as the favorite in the NLDS, they emerge as our favorite pick in the World Series … quite curious. No other team got more than 20% of the vote, but the White Sox, Brewers, and Rays were also heavy favorites. Why did those teams get picked?




“Elite level talent and overall depth through each part of the roster, the Dodgers’ superiority reigns terror on the entire MLB playoffs!”- Collin Carlone

Basic but they have the best team. Multiple aces, tons of good bats, just need the bullpen to hold it together”- James Schiano

The Dodgers are … inevitable. They’re the only team that can out-black-magic the Cardinals, and they’ve just got too many horses for the rest of the league. An angry Max is a dangerous Max. And they’ve got two.”- Wynn McDonald



“They’re one Blake Snell blown call away from a Game 7. I think they can pull it out this year.” – Alex Fast

I think they are the most balanced team, best positioned to weather any slumps, injuries, etc. I think the Dodgers are likely the best overall team, and the White Sox might be the best in the AL, but the Rays feel like the most resilient based on how they are built.” – Chad Young

Rays have a balanced under the radar explosive offense that scored the second-most runs in baseball and a deep and flexible pitching staff. They’ve been on the brink of winning a World Series before and that will motivate them to win a championship this season. Very close 7 game series against the Giants.” – Joe Gallina


White Sox


Incredible pitching + a great offense” – Nick Pollack

Their combination of pitching and hitting is excellent. The same could be said about the Dodgers but it doesn’t feel fun to pick them.” – Jim Chatterton




“Pitching wins championships and they have three great starters plus an elite bullpen, even without Devin Williams.” – Shelly Verougstraete

“Most of the attention is on the NL West, but on top of that incredible rotation, Milwaukee’s lineup is REALLY solid top to bottom. I don’t think most are aware of how good Adames, Avi García, and Luis Urías were this season. And even without Devin Williams, their bullpen is built to win high-stress, low-scoring playoff games.” – Zach Hayes


World Series Trophy stencil by Kidadl | Adapted by Aaron Polcare (@bearydoesgfx on Twitter)

Dave Cherman

Across the Seams Manager, also a former player and umpire and New York-based lawyer who spends his free time studying advanced statistics and obsessing over fantasy trades. Will debate with you about most anything.

One response to “Pitcher List’s 2021 Postseason Predictions”

  1. theKraken says:

    The Dodgers deserved to lose that WC game. There is no reason in the universe that Joe Kelly should pitch in a decisive game. Cards countered with a scrub of their own with a career WHIP of 1.50. MLB baseball is sad.

    You could wake Max Scherzer at 3 in the morning following a 130 pitch outing, drag him to the field, kick him in the nuts, spray pepper spray his eyes and he will be a better pitcher than Joe Kelly on his best day on PEDs.

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