The Dodgers have a decent lineup with some pop, helped along by Puig's return (he had been injured for much of September). The real strength of the team is at the front of the rotation with Greinke and Kershaw, two of the league's best three or four pitchers. They form one of the most dominant one-twos in MLB history and will be tough to beat.
New York Mets
Season record: 90-72
Home record: 49-32
Away record: 41-40
Key players: Jacob deGrom (SP), Jeurys Familia (C), Yoenis Cespedes (CF), Lucas Duda (1B)
Key injuries: Juan Uribe (IF, return unknown), Steven Matz (SP, also unknown]
Projected starters: deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, Matt Harvey, Matz, deGrom
Here's what you need to know:
If the Mets' bats can wake up after a really poor last week or so of the season, they're one of the teams to beat. The starting pitchers are outstanding and much deeper than the Dodgers' - if Matz is healthy, they have four legitimate aces. The streaky Lucas Duda can do a lot for this team if his bat is hot. It's all about timing for the Mets - if they wake up from their slump, they are a better team than LA.
Come on, you knew I wouldn't pick against the Mets!
In all seriousness, though, the Mets are a better team than the Dodgers. If they can steal one of the first two games in LA against the Dodgers' aces, the series flips on its head and the Mets gain serious control. The Dodgers are not deep beyond Kershaw and Greinke and could be vulnerable putting up Brett Anderson against Syndergaard. Plus, the lineup isn't quite as strong as the Mets' is. The bullpens are fairly equal, though the Mets are stronger in the later innings with Clippard and Familia. However, the Mets' current form has me worried, as the team has really struggled to score of late. If Yoenis Cespedes recovers his form from a few weeks ago, if the pitching stays solid and if this team plays like I know it can, I say the Mets take it in 5 games.