And then there were two. The Chicago White Sox, 46 years removed from their last World Series appearance, and fresh off their first playoff victories since 1917, will meet the Houston Astros. Formerly the Houston Colt 45s, the Astros waited 45 (minus one) years to make their maiden voyage to the World Series. Clearly, these two franchises embody the idea of "being in it for the long run." The pitching, which was supposed to dominate, has been as shaky as this stock market, but it is early. Both clubs have tremendous starting pitching, complemented with outstanding bullpens. As always, there are many interesting story lines, but more about that below. First, here are my picks for the week.
World Series Champ!
Cabot Oil & Gas ( COG) is a leading oil and gas producer, engaged in the acquisition, exploration, development, exploitation, production and marketing of properties primarily in North America, with an expansion effort beyond West Canada. It has substantial interests in the Gulf Coast, including Texas and Louisiana, the Rocky Mountains and Mid-Continent. During the third quarter, in the East alone, Cabot participated in 10 wells, with nine being successful. Additionally, Cabot has five rigs currently drilling. Production grew 10% for the nine months of 2005 vs. the first nine months of 2004. In a mid-October update, Chairman and CEO Dan Dinges had this to say about Cabot's outlook: "In each of our regions, we have new and exciting opportunities that are consistent with our strategic direction. Our drilling, acquisitions, and leasing efforts are focused on building an asset profile that balances our reserve and production portfolios." It gets better, as Dinges went on to say: "With a larger program planned to exploit our 1 million acres for next year, some R&D opportunities in front of us, we anticipate greater expansion in Cabot's reserves and production."