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The Dodgers and Astros weren’t slowed down by the All-Star break

Saturday’s Say Hey, Baseball includes the two best teams in baseball, the worst contracts around the league, and the fallout from the Jose Quintana deal.

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Given the inherent unpredictability that comes from short postseason series that follow a long, grinding season, there is no such thing as an inevitable World Series matchup. We see top regular season teams fall in short series all the time, most notably when the 116-win Mariners fell in the 2001 ALCS. With all of that being said, each league this season has a team that is soaring above the rest. Both the Dodgers and the Astros have been on fire pretty much since the season began, and if other teams around the league were hoping the All-Star break would slow them down, they’re going to be sorely disappointed.

The Dodgers were on an absurd tear when they were stopped by the All-Star Game festivities, winning 26 of their last 30 games in the first half. That opened up a huge lead in the competitive National League West, and the only hope for a team like the Diamondbacks was if they struggled out of the gate in the second half. On Friday, they didn’t put together a dominant win in Miami, but rather a thrilling one in which Yasiel Puig’s second homer of the night gave L.A. the late lead and eventual victory.

The Astros, meanwhile, weren’t quite as hot as the Dodgers heading into the break, but they were still nearly unstoppable. Houston won 14 of their last 20 games and have a lineup that can carry them through any stretch of the season. They came right out of the gate by putting ten runs up against the contending Twins. If you are given a choice between an Astros/Dodgers World Series matchup or the field, you have to take the field. That being said, it’s been a long time since a matchup seemed more inevitable than this one, and it’s becoming clear nothing can slow these teams down.

  • On Friday, the Red Sox designated Pablo Sandoval for assignment. It ended one of the worst signings in recent memory, but there are worse contracts out there.
  • The Red Sox and Yankees play a big series this weekend, and Boston took the first game with a ninth-inning rally that ended with a walkoff walk.
  • Speaking of the Dodgers, there are rumors they are exploring a trade for Zach Britton. What would the Orioles need to get back in that kind of deal?
  • It goes without saying that Pablo Sandoval didn’t work out in Boston. Would the Giants have actually been better off if they re-signed the third baseman when they had the chance?
  • The Jose Quintana deal from earlier in the week helps set the market for other controllable pitchers, a group that includes Gerrit Cole.
  • Speaking of Quintana, the lefty always deserved better from his time in Chciago.
  • In other trade news, you can expect the Sonny Gray market to start heating up very soon.
  • The Brewers are going to be surprising buyers this season, but don’t expect them to mortgage their future for a run in 2017.
  • What in the world happened to Detroit’s outfield?
  • The Yankees almost never let prime-aged stars leave for another team. They did so with Robinson Cano, and they’re clearly regretting it.