Rick Zamperin: Blue Jays will go the distance vs. Rays, Dodgers will go all the way

Toronto Blue Jays Randal Grichuk, left, celebrates his three-run home run with Vladimir Guerrero Jr. during the seventh inning of the team's baseball game against the Baltimore Orioles, Saturday, Sept. 26, 2020, in Buffalo, N.Y. AP Photo/Jeffrey T. Barnes

After an unprecedented 60-game regular season, Major League Baseball is embarking on an equally unprecedented post-season.

Starting Tuesday, 16 teams slide into the playoffs — up from the 10 that we’ve grown accustomed to seeing over the last number of years — including the upstart Toronto Blue Jays.

The eighth-seeded Jays take on the Tampa Bay Rays, the American League’s top ranked ball club, in a best-of-three wild card series that will be played at Tropicana Field.

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If Toronto manages to upset the Rays they will make their way to one of two MLB playoff bubbles that have been set up in California and Texas where the Divisional Series, ALCS and NLCS will be played, while this year’s World Series will be waged at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas.

Anything can happen in a three-game series, but Tampa Bay is a better and deeper team than Toronto, at least on paper, and should win this series in three.

Read more: Rick Zamperin: Ryu should start opener of Blue Jays-Rays wild card series

As for the rest of the playoffs, here are my picks for baseball’s most unpredictable post-season bracket.

Wild card series, American League

2) Oakland A’s over 7) Chicago White Sox

3) Minnesota Twins over 6) Houston Astros

5) New York Yankees over 4) Cleveland Indians

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Wild card series, National League

1) Los Angeles Dodgers over 8) Milwaukee Brewers

7) Cincinnati Reds over 2) Atlanta Braves

3) Chicago Cubs over 6) Miami Marlins

4) San Diego Padres over 5) St. Louis Cardinals

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AL Division Series – Tampa Bay over N.Y. Yankees, Oakland over Minnesota

NL Division Series – L.A. Dodgers over San Diego, Chicago over Cincinnati

AL Championship Series – Tampa Bay over Oakland

NL Championship Series – L.A. Dodgers over Chicago

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World Series – L.A. Dodgers over Tampa Bay

As you can see, I’m not at all going out on a limb with a Fall Classic featuring the two best teams in 2020 but the Dodgers and Rays are the two teams, I think, are best positioned to succeed because of their talented starting rotations, deep lineup and they’re well coached.

After they lost in the World Series in 2017 and 2018, I’m selecting the Dodgers to win their first championship since 1988.

Rick Zamperin is the assistant program, news and senior sports director at Global News Radio 900 CHML.

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