World Series matchup: Duquette's picks

World Series matchup: Duquette's picks

As the World Series approaches, MLB.com is asking experts to chime in on who has the edge at particular matchups. Players are ranked on a scale of 1-100, factoring in various statistical analyses, experience, recent performance and moxie.

Since both team's will determine their pitching rotations over the course of the series, all potential starting options are considered.

Additionally, in games at Yankee Stadium, Ben Francisco will play left field for the Phillies, with Raul Ibanez shifting to DH. Since the games Francisco will be starting will be the same ones that will be started by regular Yankees DH Hideki Matsui, that's the matchup here: Francisco vs. Matsui.

With that criteria in mind, here's what MLB.com's Jim Duquette had to say ...

Position by Position Ratings and Analysis
Position Team Players Ratings Analysis
C PHI
NYY
Carlos Ruiz
Jorge Posada
70
90
Posada's bat in the middle of the lineup and his ability to drive in clutch runs, plus his postseason experience, outweighs Ruiz's defensive ability and the fact that he's become an RBI machine in the No. 8 spot in the lineup.
1B PHI
NYY
Ryan Howard
Mark Teixeira
100
100
Howard's consistent ability to be an offensive force in the postseason has been remarkable and has carried the Phillies. Teixeira's Gold Glove defense has masked his offensive struggles, but it appears like his bat has come to life during the past two games.
2B PHI
NYY
Chase Utley
Robinson Cano
100
80
Despite Utley's recent power outage and lack of RBIs in the postseason, he still has a knack for getting on base and producing runs while his defensive struggles should be behind him. Cano's Gold Glove defense has been steadying in the infield, but his bat can't compare to Utley's.
SS PHI
NYY
Jimmy Rollins
Derek Jeter
90
100
Rollins is the energy and fire at the top of the lineup, but his inconsistency at the plate makes him hard to predict. Jeter's steady, consistent play at the highest level makes him the heartbeat of the Yankees.
3B PHI
NYY
Pedro Feliz
Alex Rodriguez
70
100
Feliz's defense at the corner is extremely underrated, but A-Rod's true baseball abilities have finally come out during the postseason like they consistently have during the regular season.
LF PHI
NYY
Raul Ibanez
Johnny Damon
90
80
Damon's clutch hit in Game 6 helped give the Yankees breathing room vs the Angels. Ibanez is still an RBI machine that will play a major role for the Phillies' World Series hopes, as the Yankees pitch carefully to Howard and Werth.
CF PHI
NYY
Shane Victorino
Melky Cabrera
90
80
Melky has been one the Yankees' hottest hitters in the past three games and has played the little man's game well, Victorino is the "other" spark plug at the top of the lineup and has been solid in center.
RF PHI
NYY
Jayson Werth
Nick Swisher
90
70
Swisher's offensive struggles are well documented but he's provided several key defensive plays to keep him in the lineup. Werth has had a career year and will get plenty of opportunities as the Yankees pitch around Howard. Expect him to step up like he did at the end of the LCS.
DH PHI
NYY
Ben Francisco
Hideki Matsui
70
90
Yankees clearly have the advantage as Matsui is one of the key clutch hitters that the Yankees have, while Francisco has served primarily as a key bench player.
Bench Phillies
Yankees
80
80
Both benches have versatility from the right and left sides of the plate, and the Philliess have the experience of using their bench in the NL games while the Yankees may have better overall speed off the bench.
Starter PHI


NYY
Cliff Lee
Cole Hamels
Pedro Martinez
J.A. Happ
Joe Blanton

CC Sabathia
A.J. Burnett
Andy Pettitte
Chad Gaudin
100
80
80
70
80

100
80
90
70
The ability of CC to pitch on 3 days' rest with quality stuff, plus the experience and ability of Pettitte, gives the Yankees the nod over the Philliess. Despite Lee's effectiveness, there are too many questions after him.
Closer PHI
NYY
Brad Lidge
Mariano Rivera
80
100
Lidge seems to have righted himself in the postseason and is closer to last year's Lidge than he was all season. But Mariano is Mariano -- and the two-inning save and his continued success gives the Yankees a clear edge.
Setup Phillies
Yankees
80
80
Both teams have question marks coming into the WS, as the relief corps leading up to the closer have been inconsistent and somewhat ineffective.
Manager PHI
NYY
Charlie Manuel
Joe Girardi
90
80
Manuel's constant guiding hand and the fact that he's been there before gives him a slight edge over Girardi's aggressiveness and inexperience as a manager in postseason.
Projected Winning Team
Winning team Games Analysis
Yankees Six The Yankees are too well-rounded at almost every position, and the starting staff plus the back end of the 'pen has too much quality for the Phillies to repeat as champions.