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MLB World Series 2010 News | Archive March 6, 2010


2010 World Series Predictions and Odds

March 6, 2010

Oddsmakers from online betting sportsbook have made the New York Yankees 3/1 favorites to win the 2010 World Series after winning baseball’s championship in 2009. The 2009 World Series runner up, the Philadelphia Phillies, are 6/1 to win this season.

The defending champs traded for Detroit Tigers (28/1) outfielder Curtis Granderson in the outfield and also signed right fielder Randy Winn. The Bronx Bombers lost Hideki Matsui to the Los Angeles Angels (14/1) via free agency and have yet to re-sign Johnny Damon.

One team that usually makes a splash in the offseason is the New York Mets, who are 18/1 to win the 2010 World Series. The Mets signed one of the best hitters on the market in Jason Bay, who will patrol left field for them next season and hopefully bring stability to their offense.

The St. Louis Cardinals were able to re-sign outfielder Matt Holliday, which was their biggest offseason priority. At times it looked like Holliday would sign elsewhere, but in the end the Cardinals (who are 13/1 to win the World Series next season) were able to keep the middle of the order intact.

A complete list of 2010 World Series futures odds:

Arizona Diamondbacks 50/1

Atlanta Braves 20/1

Baltimore Orioles 100/1

Boston Red Sox 6/1

Chicago Cubs 18/1

Chicago White Sox 28/1

Cincinnati Reds 45/1

Cleveland Indians 75/1

Colorado Rockies 18/1

Detroit Tigers 28/1

Florida Marlins 25/1

Houston Astros 75/1

Kansas City Royals 80/1

Los Angeles Angels 14/1

Los Angeles Dodgers 12/1

Milwaukee Brewers 40/1

Minnesota Twins 24/1

New York Mets 18/1

New York Yankees 3/1

Oakland Athletics 65/1

Philadelphia Phillies 6/1

Pittsburgh Pirates 125/1

San Diego Padres 80/1

San Francisco Giants 20/1

Seattle Mariners 16/1

St. Louis Cardinals 13/1

Tampa Bay Rays 22/1

Texas Rangers 24/1

Toronto Blue Jays 100/1

Washington Nationals 150/1

•  MLB World Series News Archive Index: 2010, 2009
•  MLB World Series Tickets


Lackey's debut goes off without a hitch

By Ian Browne
March 6, 2010

Fort Myers, FL — It started with precision and ended without a blemish. John Lackey's debut in a Red Sox uniform -- at least the unofficial one -- went off without a hitch.

The right-hander, who signed a five-year, $82.5 million pact to join forces with the Sox back in December, sent down all six Twins batters he faced in his first Grapefruit League contest on Saturday afternoon.

"I felt pretty good," said Lackey. "It's a good place to start from. It's always different when you have to sit down and get back up for that second inning. It's a little harder to get loose that second inning, as opposed to the first. But overall, [I felt] pretty good, and I'll keep moving forward."

Epitomizing the low-key way Lackey has initiated himself to the Red Sox, he didn't view his first start for a team other than the Angels as any type of milestone moment.

Instead, he looked at it for what it was -- a necessary step to be ready for Opening Day. Well, at least close to Opening Day.

While manager Terry Francona has yet to announce which of his three aces will draw the assignment against the Yankees on April 4, Lackey doesn't believe it should be him. He is just happy to be part of a trio that also includes Josh Beckett and Jon Lester.

"I'm not worried about that at all," Lackey said. "If the roles were reversed, and I would have stayed in Anaheim and those guys had come over there, I would expect to still be going first. I think those guys have earned the right. They've won a lot of games for [manager Terry Francona], and to go in front of me, I'm all right with that."

Speaking of Francona, he was not on hand for Lackey's first game with the Sox. Bench coach DeMarlo Hale ran the team at home, while Francona took the other split squad to Port Charlotte, Fla., to play the Rays.

In Hale's former role as third-base coach for the Sox, he remembers what a lonely feeling it could be on nights Lackey was pitching.

"[Lackey is] very competitive," said Hale. "I can remember being there on third base where you saw him in the moment. The moment wasn't too big for him. No doubt, he's had some success and made some big pitches in those moments. That's what I remember, standing in that third-base box and competing against him. Now he's with us. I'm glad Lackey is on our side this year, for sure."

If Saturday was any indication, players will enjoy playing behind Lackey. He doesn't waste time and isn't afraid to put the ball in play.

"It helps, because he's dictating the pace," said Hale. "I think defensively, when you're playing behind a pitcher like that who's going to dictate the pace and is positive for your defense, yeah, you like to see it -- and most guys like to play behind guys like that."

It didn't take Lackey long to get in rhythm. He struck out the first batter he faced, Ben Revere. But it was the final batter he faced -- Delmon Young in the second -- when Lackey realized he was right where he needed to be for a first spring start.

"Probably the best indicator today was when I got 3-1 to Delmon Young and pretty much challenged him with a fastball down the middle, and he fouled it off," Lackey said. "That means I had a little life on my fastball."

He got just a mini glimpse of what it is like pitching in front of Red Sox fans, working in front of a capacity crowd of 7,640 at City of Palms. Multiply that by five, and that's what Lackey will have at his back before every home game he pitches in Boston. The club hasn't played in front of less than a sellout crowd since 2003.

"Once you get into a game, see different guys behind you, throwing to different people, it's definitely different," Lackey said. "It was fun. I was glad I got to do it here [at home] for the first time."

Though it would seem to be a major adjustment for Lackey -- getting used to life away from the Angels and with the Red Sox -- he says that isn't the case.

"Honestly, it's been pretty easy," Lackey said. "It's been easier than I thought it was going to be. Guys have been great. It's a great group of guys -- easy to fit in with. I thought it was going to be more difficult than it actually has been."

Lackey looks forward to contributing to what should be a stacked pitching rotation.
"I can definitely see that happening," Lackey said. "I'm going to be the first one on the top step, pulling for them to do great. When it comes your turn, as for those guys, you don't want to let them down, just keep the line going."

The main goal for Lackey this spring is just to stay healthy, something he wasn't able to do in his final two camps with the Angels.

"It's something I've taken into account, working out, trying to strengthen my arm a bit more and being a little more careful in my throwing program," said Lackey.

A few weeks from now, the quest will truly begin for Lackey, as he makes his regular-season debut for Boston. Then, he will feel what it like to play for an organization in which scrutiny follows every pitch, let alone every game.

"I think the expectations for everybody are high," Lackey said. "This is an organization that expects to win, and we expect to win as players, for sure. My expectation is to help out with that."

•  MLB World Series News Archive Index: 2010, 2009
•  MLB World Series Tickets


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