Ten Bold Prophecies for the 2014 Playoffs by Bradley Woodrum September 9, 2014 It has been a year hence since I made a series of bold predictions, all of which came true, I assume. And now it is time to press forward and prognosticate and pontificate about this very season’s future. The following events will occur during the 2014 MLB Postseason: Prophecy #1 A heretofore unknown bench player will hit two key home runs and a extra-clutch double. This will propel him into additional playing time in 2015, where he will generally be a nondescript disappointment. Prophecy #2 An NL manager will use the word “flabbergasting” in a post-game presser. The world will trend on Twitter — but not for the reasons you might expect. Prophecy #3 A call to the bullpen will go disastrously wrong! “You want to speak with Fernando Dogney?” Rollover to animate. Prophecy #4 In the fifth inning of Game 1 of the ALCS, an advertisement for The Simpsons will appear on the Fox Sports 1 broadcast. This image will freeze in the middle of the screen and remain there for an awkward 15 seconds. Prophecy #5 A cat will run onto the field in the NL Wild Card game — but not the kind of cat you’re thinking of! Prophecy #6 Despite missing the playoffs by almost 30 games, the Houston Astros will still manage to record two errors during the ALDS. Rollover to animate. Prophecy #7 With the deciding World Series Game 7 teetering on a 3-3 tie in the 9th inning, manager Matt Williams will remove Tyler Clippard from the mound and then begin pitching himself. The Mariners hitters, so shocked at the move, will go down in order and the game will go into extra innings. During the postgame interview, Matt Williams will avoid reporters’ questions about the legality of the move by reading directly from a 1998 Yellow Pages phonebook from Fort Wayne, Indiana. The names he reads into the mic will later be engraved on the pedestal of his Hall of Fame bust as a lasting tribute. Prophecy #8 Jon Lester will become the first postseason pitcher with a negative ERA. Prophecy #9 After a hamstring issue causes Adams Jones to be a gametime scratch, the Baltimore Orioles will start David Lough in centerfield for Game 1 of the ALDS. During a pitching change in the 7th inning, Lough will remove his left cleat and use his big toe to scratch the phrase “CROATOAN” into the warning track. After the game, he will tell reporters that he meant to spell his name but had “a debilitating typo.” The nickname “Debilitating Typo” will follow him around for another season and a half before abruptly and mysteriously disappearing from the zeitgeist lexicon. Prophecy #10 With runners on first and second, top of the 11th in Game 7 of the World Series, Jayson Werth will come to the plate with an 0-for-4 evening. The first pitch, a fastball, will arrive high and tight. The ball will disappear into Werth’s beard, which has grown to reach his knees since the 3rd inning. The catcher, Mike Zunino, will dive in after the ball, and he too will disappear. Werth will attempt to take first base on a hit batter, but the umpire will rule the ball is a wild pitch and still a live play. The Nationals will round round the bases until Werth himself slides home and gives Washington a dramatic 6-3 win. During the on-field mob following the bottom of the inning, the ball will dislodge and tumble out of Werth’s beard near the pitching mound. BONUS Prophecy Jayson Werth will daily put little bits of extra food into his beard in hopes that Mike Zunino is alive in there somewhere. Every now and then, a few cleaned chicken bones will be on Werth’s beard pillow in the morning, but Werth will always wonder whatever happened to Zunino on that fateful day. Rollover to animate.