No, I am not talking about the Presidential Election, although that could become a bloodbath real quick if we don’t reign them in. I am talking about Baseball. There are five teams currently battling for their chance at the “Fall Classic”, and every one of them has waited a long time to wear those rings. Lets meet our cast.
The “Districts” – Chicago (Cubs), Cleveland (Indians), Los Angeles (Dodgers), Toronto (Blue Jays), and Washington (Nationals).
Now, before we continue, lets point out that we can nickname Toronto the “Mocking-Jays”, which isn’t much of a stretch. They are a team of competitive, talented, but also short tempered players. Even their fans want a taste of the action. The Jays were very excited to get another chance against the Texas Rangers, who they ended up sweeping in three games. Earlier in the season, Toronto Right Fielder Jose Bautista was suspended for several games for a fist fight at second base with Rangers’ Rougned Odor.
Another “Hunger Games” reference, Cleveland’s Progressive Field has the “District” ticket, which a standing room only ticket available to fans for their “Corner District” food alley in Right Field.
As mentioned, each team has waited a long time for a possible World Series win. The longest, by far, is the Chicago Cubs. The last time the Cubs won a title was in 1908. That’s more than a century ago. In fact, their last time even reaching the World Series was in 1945. They were knocked out in the ALCS last year by the New York Mets.
Cleveland is the next longest W.S. drought. The Indians won their most recent title in 1948, beating the Boston Braves. They remained uninvited to the series until 1995 when they volunteered as tribute against the Atlanta Braves. Their efforts were for naught as they were beaten by Atlanta, and then again by the Florida Marlins in the 1997 World Series.
The Los Angeles Dodgers, who are still fighting with the Nationals in the ALDS, have had many trips to the playoffs since their last big win in 1988. Since beating the Oakland Athletics in a pinch hit walk off Home Run by Kirk Gibson to win the World Series, the Dodgers came close in 2014, falling just short of a W.S. appearance. The St. Louis Cardinals took four games, to the Dodgers’ two, beating Clayton Kershaw twice.
The Toronto Blue Jays are the most recent World Series winner. They won back to back titles in 1992 and 1993, beating both Atlanta and Philadelphia. Though the most recent winners, the Jays have not reached the World Series since the “Wildcard” went into affect (1995). They came close in 2015, taking two games against the Kansas City Royals in the ALCS, but the Royals would ultimately take the series and go own to win the World Series against the Mets.
Finally, we talk about the Nationals. Stationed in our country’s Capital of Washington D.C., they have not appeared in a World Series game at all. The team, which moved to Washington in 2005, made it to the NLDS in 2012, and 2014, but no farther. Currently, they are tied with the Dodgers at two games to advance to the NLCS. They have not made it to the NLCS since 1981, when they were the Montreal Expos.
So it is clear to see, that these teams are hungry, and will do anything to win this year’s World Series. It’s just a matter of who can fight the hardest, and who will not make the cut. Oh, and remember teams, “May the odds be ever in your favor.”