MLB World Series
The MLB (Major League Baseball) World Series is the championship series between the winner of the National League and American League winners. The AL and NL champions play off in a best-of-seven series, with the home-field advantage awarded to the team with the better regular season record.
The MLB World Series is the one of the biggest events in American sports, and is the conclusion to a post-season that includes a wildcard playoff game, two Divisional series and a Championship Series in each league.
MLB World Series History
The Major League Baseball World Series began way back in in 1903.
Prior to the 1969 season, the team with the best regular season record from the NL and AL played off in the World Series, however since 1969, each league has held a championship series to determine who will advance to the World Series.
The MLB introduced the idea of a wildcard placement for the 1994 season, which would give a non-divisional winner the chance to compete in the playoffs for the first time. The wildcard winner has gone on to win the World Series on six occasions, including three straight years from 2002-2004.
In the early years, all World Series games were played during the day, however in 1971 the MLB trialed the first ever night World Series match. The idea certainly caught on, with the last World Series game to be played during the day taking place in 1987.
The Last Pitch Of The Last 25 World Series (Prior to 2013)
Ten fun facts about MLB World Series
1. The Chicago Cubs came back to defeat the Cleveland Indians 8-7 in 2016, breaking a 108 year championship drought, one of the oldest in sporting history anywhere in the world.
2. The Cleveland Indians now have the honour of holding the longest drought in baseball, having won their last World Series 68 years ago in 1948.
3. No team has won consecutive MLB World Series’ since the New York Yankees three-peated in 1998, 1999 and 2000.
4. One season after the initial World Series in 1903, there was no championship series. The New York Giants refused to participate in the World Series, claiming the American League was inferior to the National League, which they had won.
5. The New York Yankees claimed five straight World Series titles from 1949-1953. Less than two decades after they won four titles in a row from 1936-1939.
6. The Texas Rangers have made the World Series on just two occasions, losing consecutive series in 2010 and 2011.
7. The 1919, 1920 and 1921 World Series were a best-of-nine game series, with the series reverting in 1922 back to the best-of-seven structure that remains to this day.
8. In 2003, the league decided to assign home-field advantage to the team that won the mid-season All-Star game. That will change back in 2017, with the advantage reverting to the side with the best regular season record.
9. The Babe Ruth Award honours the best player in the MLB post-season.
10. Jack Morris and Sandy Koufax are the only players to win the Babe Ruth Award twice, while Luis Tiant is the only winner to play in a losing World Series team (1975).
MLB World Series Bet Types
The markets for betting on MLB World Series are active all season and are referred to as the ‘Futures Markets’.
Moneyline, or Head to Head betting is the most simple of all World Series bets – where you bet on who will win each game outright.
Another bet type is the Total Runs Over/Under. Here you bet on whether the total number of runs scored in a game is over, or under an number total set by the bookmakers.
You can also bet on Run Lines, where you wager on teams with a set run spread and you can bet on certain players to score a run during a game.
Past 5 MLB World Series Winners
2016 – Chicago Cubs defeated Cleveland Indians 4-3.
Chicago rallied from a 3-1 series deficit, winning the final two games on the road including a Game 7 win (8-7) in extra innings. The game was delayed for 17 minutes between the 9th and 10th innings due to heavy rain, but the Cubs came out and broke a 108-year title drought in.
Ben Zobrist won the World Series MVP, hitting .357 and delivering the go-ahead hit at the top of the tenth inning.
2015 – Kansas City Royals defeated New York Mets 4-1.
Kansas City avenged their World Series loss in 2014 with a dominant five-game victory against the Mets.
Game 1 stretched out to 14 innings, with Kansas City falling over the line in a five-hour marathon.
The Royals dominated Game 2, but the Mets did some dominating of their own in Game 3.
Kansas City then closed the World Series out with an soft Game 4 win and a thrilling 12-innings win in Game 5, where they scored five runs at the top of the 12th inning.
Catcher Salvatore Perez captured the MVP award.
2014 – San Francisco Giants defeated Kansas City Royals 4-3.
San Francisco won the series on the Royals’ field with an enthralling 3-2 win. After the Giants scored a run to go up 3-2 at the top of the fourth, there was not another run scored as Madison Bumgarner held the Royals scoreless over five innings, the longest save in World Series history.
Bumgarner played brilliantly with a total shutout in Game 5 and was a deserved MVP winner, as the Giants went on to win their third title in five years.
2013 – Boston Red Sox defeated St.Louis Cardinals 4-2.
Boston had finished last in the American League in 2012, but turned it around 180 degrees, finishing 1st in the league and taking the World Series back to Boston.
After winning Game 1 easily they fell behind 2-1 as the Cardinals wrestled back the series.
Boston held St.Louis to four runs combined in the final three games as they dominated behind legendary slugger and World Series MVP, David “Big Papi” Ortiz, who scored two home runs and had four other scores.
2012 – San Francisco Giants defeated Detroit Tigers 4-0.
San Francisco got the brooms out in 2012, winning Game 1 by 8-3 and never looking back.
Detroit relied heavily on star pitcher Justin Verlander, but he was hit all over the park for five runs in the first four innings of Game 1, with the tone was set by MVP-to-be Pablo Sandoval, who smashed three home runs.
San Francisco then shut Detroit out in Game 2, winning 2-0 and they matched this effort again in Game 3, notching back-to-back post-season shutouts for the first time since 1917.
Game 4 went to extra innings, with a Marco Scutaro’s single allowing Ryan Theriot to score, leading the Giants to a 4-3 World Series victory.
The 2012 World Series was the lowest rating series on record.
Past 5 Babe Ruth Award Winners
2016 – Ben Zobrist, Chicago: .357 batting average, 10 hits and 5 runs scored.
2015 – Salvador Perez, Kansas City: .364 batting average, 51 innings caught and three runs scored.
2014 – Madison Bumgarner, San Francisco: 2-0 record, 1 save, 1 shutout, 17 strikeouts and just one earned run allowed in 21 innings pitched.
2013 – David Ortiz, Boston: .688 batting average, two home runs and six runs batted in.
2012 – Pablo Sandoval, San Francisco: .500 batting average, 3 home runs in Game 1 (World Series record) and four runs batted in.
Who has won the most MLB World Series?
The New York Yankees have dominated baseball over its history, winning the World Series on 27 occasions and finishing runner-up on another 13 occasions.
San Francisco have won 8 times from 20 appearances, ranking second on the list of World Series’ made while St Louis have won 11 World Series Championships.
The Miami Marlins and Toronto Blue Jays have won both times they have appeared in the World Series, while the Texas Rangers and San Diego Padres have nothing to show from two attempts.
The Seattle Mariners and Washington Nationals are the only two MLB teams to never have made a World Series.
The Milwaukee Brewers, Houston Astros, Colorado Rockies and Tampa Bay Rays have each made the World Series once, each leaving with nothing.