The MLB World Series has provided so many memories over the years, from memorable games to incredible individual stories, the World Series is the culmination of a year's hard work. Baseball above all other sports is heavy on stats, as managers decide starting rotations and relief pitchers based on statistical performances. Still, there is a place where stats and emotions meet, and that is in championship games, where games turn into legends and amazing records and stats are created.
We all know who has won the most World Series of all-time, that honor goes to the New York Yankees with 27. We also know that there have been many amazing and legendary players to never win a World Series like Ken Griffey Jr.
This article will take a deep dive into some unknown facts and tidbits about the fall classic that you may not know. It’s a good way to impress your friends or have something to talk about at the water cooler at work. Here are some interesting World Series records and stats!
The New York Giants refused to play the 1904 World Series
The Giants were the National League champion coming into the 1904 World Series but refused to play against the American League champion Boston Pilgrims because the Giants manager John McGraw considered the AL an "inferior league" and had personal issues with American League president Ban Johnson and declined to play.
Still, since 1905 the World Series has been played annually with only one exception in 1994 due to the players’ strike. For the exception of the 1919 - 1921 seasons, where the series was decided by the best of nine games, the fall classic has been played as a best of seven series.
The New York Yankees win five consecutive World Series 1949-53
The Yankees are dominant no question about it, but in the late 40s and early 50s, they were downright unbeatable. The victims were the Dodgers in 5 games in 1949, the Phillies in 4 games in 1950, Giants in 6 games in 1951, the Dodgers again in 7 games in 1952, and the Dodgers once again in 6 games in 1953.
This is the longest championship streak in MLB history, the Yankee roster had Joe DiMaggio and Mickey Mantle on it during this run, while Yogi Berra and Phil Rizzuto were on all five championship teams.
In 1955 the first-ever World Series MVP was awarded.
In the 1955 series, the Brooklyn Dodgers defeated the New York Yankees in an emotional 7 game series. It was also the first series that the MVP award was given to a player, the first-ever World Series MVP was Brooklyn’s pitcher Johnny Podres.
Podres pitched a complete game in Game 3, it was a seven-hit victory, in Game 7 Podres pitched a 2-0 shutout to win the Dodgers their only World Series before moving to Los Angeles.
1971 the first-night game World Series
Until the 1971 World Series, all games were played during the day, it was not until Game 4 between the Baltimore Orioles and the Pittsburgh Pirates at Three- Rivers stadium did a game officially begin in the evening hours.
The game finished with a Pittsburgh 4-3 victory and 14 hits, The Orioles blew a 3-0 lead, and in the seventh inning the Pirates pulled through with a few one-out singles, and a clutch RBI single by Milt May.
1976 the designated hitter is implemented in the World Series
In 1973 when the American League adopted the designated hitter rule as a way to have teams have an extra experienced hitter hit over a pitcher from 1973 - 1975 the World Series was played without the rule in place for those games.
In 1976 when the DH was allowed it was strangely only allowed for even-numbered years only. In 1986 in the Boston Red Sox and New York Mets series, the rule was adopted for every World Series game played in AL stadiums.
Sparky Anderson becomes the first manager to win a World Series for both leagues
Legendary manager Sparky Anderson became the first manager in MLB history to win baseball’s biggest prize in both the National and American leagues.
He has won back-to-back titles with the Cincinnati Reds in 1975 and 1976, later in 1984 he would win in the American League with the Detroit Tigers.
The earthquake that shook the series
In 1989 the series between the San Francisco Giants and Oakland Athletics became world news when in Game 3 a half-hour before first pitch and with ABC’s pregame on the air a 7.1 magnitude earthquake hit northeast of Santa Cruz, California.
63 people were killed as a result and there were incredible property and economic damage. The game was postponed and would be played on October 27 where Oakland won and would later complete a four-game sweep.
1992 World Series goes to Canada
For the first time in MLB history in 1992, the fall classic was played outside American soil, as the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Atlanta Braves in six games. One year later the series returned to Toronto again, this time it was against the Phillies.
Once again the Blue Jays would win the series in six games and become the first Canadian team to win back-to-back titles. Toronto is also the only expansion team to win successive World Series titles.
2001 into November
In 2001 the World Series was played in November, the regular season was suspended for one week due to the September 11 attacks. Game 4 of the series was played on Halloween night, but because it went to extra innings, it ended in the early hours of November 1st.
The game is famous because of Derek Jeter’s walk-off home run in the 10th inning that won the game for the Yankees and he became "Mr. November" as a homage to Reggie Jackson, who was "Mr. October" for his achievements during the 1977 World Series.
Teams that have won Pennants in different cities
The Braves are the only team in the MLB to have won and lost a World Series while being a team from the following cities, Boston, Milwaukee, and Atlanta. The Dodgers and Giants also played series as a Brooklyn and New York team before moving to Los Angeles and San Francisco respectively.
The A’s played in a World Series in two cities, Philadelphia, and Oakland while the Orioles are the only other team to have played in the World Series in two home cities Baltimore and St. Louis, as the Browns.