The Diamondbacks are the dark horse candidate to make the 2017 World Series

Similar to the Final Four last spring, ASU students and faculty may get to witness more postseason sports

Despite finishing fourth in the National League West last season, the Arizona Diamondbacks are now a shoe in for the 2017 MLB playoffs.

After witnessing the Final Four in Phoenix last season, ASU students and faculty will have the opportunity to witness more high-stakes playoff games.

When discussing the team's surge into playoff contention, Diamondbacks beat writer for the Arizona Republic, Nick Piecoro, said that one of the biggest factors in Arizona's success is that "(A.J.) Pollock and (David) Peralta stayed largely healthy," and Zack Greinke pitched well.

Piecoro may have a point.

Peralta and Pollock have both had over 300 more at bats than they had all of last season while Zack Greinke's ERA has dropped to 3.14 this year from 4.37 last year.

The Diamondbacks have been better statistically than their 74-58 record suggests. Arizona’s pythagorean win-loss record, which is an estimate of a team’s record based on the amount of runs scored and runs allowed, is 76-55. This is four games above their actual record of 74-58.

Once into the postseason, the Diamondbacks would then have to gear up for a one-game wild card playoff against division rivals, the Colorado Rockies. Given how poor Colorado's rotation is, the Diamondbacks' superior pitching lead by Greinke should seal a victory.

If or when the Diamondbacks win their Wild Card game, Arizona would go up against the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Dodgers have earned a remarkable 91 wins in the regular season, but if the Diamondbacks can ride the momentum of winning the Wild Card game, Arizona has the pitching and offensive ability to beat Los Angeles.

The Diamondbacks would then face either the Washington Nationals or the Chicago Cubs, which are the current National League Central leaders. Though Washington has a better record than Chicago, the reigning World Series Champion Cubs may be the tougher matchup.

"It's baseball, anything can happen," Piecoro said.

The Chase Field is pictured on Wednesday, Aug 30, 2017 in downtown Phoenix. 

If Arizona can ride its momentum and upset either Washington or Chicago in the National League Championship Series, the Diamondbacks would then get a ticket to the World Series against a worthy American League foe.

Similar to the opening week of school for ASU freshmen, these are exciting times for Diamondbacks' fans and Arizonans alike.

Arizona’s chances of making the World Series may seem slim, but we have seen 12 teams since 1995 get to the World Series as a Wild Card team and have seen six of these teams win the title.

The MLB is not like the NBA, where the favorites almost always prevail – this is baseball, a sport where the underdog often triumphs.

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Editor’s note: The opinions presented in this column are the author’s and do not imply any endorsement from The State Press or its editors.

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