Padres NLDS

Previews & predictions for 2022 Championship Series

Home » MLB » MLB Championship Series Preview 2022: Predictions, Analysis, and Schedule

With just four teams still alive to win the World Series, it’s time for the MLB Championship Series preview in 2022.

The schedule for the National League Championship Series is set to begin on Tuesday while the schedule for the American League Championship Series begins on Wednesday. More importantly, the World Series odds have been adjusted with just four teams still in the running.

MLB Championship Series preview 2022

Oddly enough, now that the field has been whittled down to four teams, this is the best time to make playoff predictions.

These may not be the four teams we expected, but we’ve seen all four teams in action and should have a good idea about what team looks ready to go win a championship.

Matchup Odds To Win Series Odds To Win Series Series To Go Seven Games
Phillies vs Padres Phillies (-200) Padres (+170) +205
Yankees vs Astros  Yankees (+150) Astros (-185) +215

All odds taken October 19 at FanDuel Sportsbook


Before making any Championship Series predictions, check out our MLB Championship Series preview for the 2022 ALCS and 2022 NLCS.

Phillies vs Padres

This is the least likely NLCS that anybody could have predicted. Neither of these teams won 90 games during the regular season or finished closer than 14 games inside their own division. Yet, it’s the Phillies and the Padres who will duke it out with a spot in the World Series on the line. The Phillies were able to knock off both the Cardinals and Braves to get to this point for the first time since 2010 while the Padres eliminated the Mets and Dodgers to make their first trip to the NLCS since 1998.

The Phillies knew heading into the postseason that Zack Wheeler and Aaron Nola would have to carry them, and those two have delivered. Wheeler and Nola have combined to allow just three earned runs on 15 hits over 25 innings. Nola, in particular, has been close to flawless while Ranger Suarez and Noah Syndergaard have done their part when called upon. Granted, the Phillies are playing with fire when it comes to their bullpen, but the starting pitching has been up to par in the postseason thus far.

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Plus, who needs a bullpen when you can just out-slug everyone? If you take away the one game the Phillies were shut out in the NLDS, they are averaging 6.4 runs per game during the playoffs. Bryce Harper has three of the team’s six home runs and three of Philly’s 13 doubles in six games. Despite missing time due to injury earlier this season, Harper looks healthy and could be the most dangerous hitter in the postseason right now.


On the other side, the Padres have to be happy with what they’ve gotten out of the trio of Yu Darvish, Joe Musgrove, and Blake Snell thus far. Those three have made a combined six starts and registered four wins. They’ve also helped to reduce the workload on the San Diego bullpen, which has been outstanding, allowing just six runs over 24.2 innings with most of the damage coming in one ill-fated appearance by Adrian Morejon. Outside of that one dreadful inning against the Mets in the Wild Card Round, the San Diego bullpen has been close to perfect.

Meanwhile, the Padres scored enough to get past the mighty Dodgers in the NLDS. Of course, they are averaging a modest 4.4 runs per game in the playoffs. Outside of a few big hits from Manny Machado, most of the damage has been done by the bottom half of San Diego’s lineup from the likes of Austin Nola and Trent Grisham, who have been the team’s biggest offensive stars. But while it’s great to get production from all parts of the lineup, Juan Soto, Josh Bell, Brandon Drury, and Wil Myers need to do more if the Padres are going to get to the World Series.

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For what it’s worth, the Phillies won four of the seven head-to-head games with the Padres this year. However, San Diego’s rotation trio is a little deeper than Philly’s tandem of Wheeler and Nola. Plus, the Padres have proven during the postseason that their bullpen is one of the best in the majors and their lineup is deeper than people realize. Over the course of a longer series, that will pay off, especially compared to Philadelphia’s bullpen issues. Look for that bullpen and a little timely hitting to take San Diego to the World Series.

  • Pick: Padres 4-2

Yankees vs Astros

The Astros futures odds remain high, as Houston is the only team that’s unbeaten in the postseason thus far.

They will meet the Yankees in what will be the fourth time these teams have met in the postseason since 2015. The Astros have won the three previous meetings, including the ALCS in 2017 and 2019. Needless to say, the Yankees will feel like they need to get the monkey off their back and finally conquer the Astros, who have the shortest odds to win the World Series heading into the League Championship Series round.

With just three games played, it’s almost hard to judge the Astros on their postseason play. Of course, they won all three of those games, including an 18-inning marathon against the Mariners. Ironically, Justin Verlander was Houston’s weakest link in the ALDS, getting rocked for six runs over four innings. But in the other 32 innings of the ALDS, Houston’s pitching staff allowed just three runs. Framber Valdez and Lance McCullers both pitched well as starters while Luis Garcia gave a heroic performance out of the bullpen in Game 3.

The Astros also flexed their offensive muscles when they needed to during the ALDS. They hit five home runs in three games, including two massive homers from Yordan Alvarez. To be fair, Jose Altuve going hitless in the series is a concern. But Yuli Gurriel started to come alive after a subpar regular season while Alex Bregman and Jeremy Pena both had bit hits, so there’s no reason to think that it won’t be business as usual for the Houston lineup during the ALCS.

It won’t be an easy task for the Yankees to control Houston’s deep lineup. Gerrit Cole and Nestor Cortes combined to deliver New York’s three wins in the ALDS, so the Yankees will rely on them heavily in the ALCS. That makes Jameson Taillon and Luis Severino key figures. Taillon got roughed up in his final start of the regular season and then gave up two runs without recording an out in his only appearance during the ALDS. Severino also had an uneven performance in the ALDS after only making three starts down the stretch after more than two months on the shelf. The Yankees also saw their bullpen let a game get away from them during the ALDS, so there is some concern there as well.

Of course, the Yankees are loaded with power offensively. There is almost no way to pitch to Aaron Judge, who homered twice in the ALDS, adding to his total of 62 during the regular season. Giancarlo Stanton and Harrison Bader combined for five homers during the ALDS while Josh Donaldson, Anthony Rizzo, and others provide additional depth. It’s just a matter of getting everyone swinging a hot bat at the same time.

When these teams met during the regular season, the Astros won five of seven games. As mentioned, they’ve also beaten the Yankees in the ALCS twice in the last five years.

In other words, Houston has owned the Yankees in recent years and our Championship Series predictions reflect that. The Astros have enough depth on their pitching staff to prevent the Yankees from getting going offensively. The same might not be true of New York’s pitching staff, which will need Cole and Cortes to carry them. That’s asking too much against Houston’s lineup in a seven-game series, and in the end, the Astros will survive and get back to the World Series.

  • Pick: Astros 4-3

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