The 2023 Major League Baseball regular season is soon set to reach its conclusion as fans from across the globe continue to voice their palpable excitement directed towards the much anticipated postseason of distinguished MLB action which culminates with the universally renowned World Series that ultimately decides who claims the prestigious Commissioner’s trophy.
Heading into the looming MLB postseason, the latest World Series odds have the star-studded Atlanta Braves locked in as the major favorites at +330 odds, closely followed by the LA Dodgers (+450) as well as the reigning world champions Houston Astros and the Tampa Bay Rays who are both ranked at +800 respectively.
Overall, there remains an unprecedented amount of hype surrounding this year’s rendition of the World Series with game one being scheduled to get underway on the 27th of October.
Looking ahead to the upcoming tournament, here are our picks from some of the most shocking and memorable moments in the history of the MLB finals series throughout the events illustrious history.
- Bill Mazeroski’s walk-off home run – 1960 Game 7:
Few moments in the sport of baseball can hardly match a walk-off play that ultimately decides the fate of both teams in question, yet when that moment happens on the biggest stage and in the decisive game of the series then it certainly merits the attention of sports fans from across the world.
In a tightly packed seven game series between the Yankees and Pirates, New York had scored two late runs at the top of the ninth inning which tied the game up at 9-9 with Pirates second baseman Bill Mazeroski stepping up to the plate at the bottom of the ninth against reliever Ralph Terry.
In dramatic fashion, Mazeroski struck Terry’s second pitch far into the left fielded seating area for a legendary home run play that is still widely discussed to this day as it claimed the Pirates their first World Series victory in 35 years and became the first and only walk-off home run victory in a game 7 throughout the event’s entire history.
- The Buckner Play – 1986 Game 6:
In what is arguably one of the greatest World Series ever played between the Mets and Red Sox, it seemed inevitable that Boston were about to lift the trophy with the Shea Stadium scoreboard even displaying a congratulatory message directed towards the Red Sox’s near impending victory.
However, after New York were able to connect with a few hits and a score tying run, it was up to Mookie Wilson to step up and potentially level the series to ensure that there will be a deciding game 7.
After hitting a few foul balls, Wilson would eventually connect with a hit that would see the ball roll between the legs of pitcher Bill Buckner which would allow Ray Knight to score a winning run from the second base and help the Mets stave off elimination before they surprisingly won the decisive game 7.
- The Cardinals force Game 7 – 2011 Game 6:
Heading into the ninth, the St. Louis Cardinals were behind 7-5 and were down to their very last strike against the Rangers who were aiming to win their first World Series title in franchise history.
With everything now on the line, David Freese would send a 1-2 pitch over to the right field that glanced over Nelson Cruz’s glove which resulted in a two-run triple to tie the game.
The Rangers would respond when Josh Hamilton converted a two-run homer at the top of the 10th as they would regain their lead before the Cardinals were just one pitch away from losing the series.
After Lance Berkman sunk a single to center that would tie the game back up, Freese would once again step up to the mark to score a game winning home run that tied the series up as the Cardinals would soon claim their 11th title in franchise history after a game 7 win.
- The Dodgers upset the Athletics – 1988 Series:
While there certainly were many individual moments from the 1988 rendition that were shocking to say the least (such as Kirk Gibson’s walk-off home run in Game 1), this series is mainly remembered due to the surprising outcome as the heavily favored Oakland Athletics were demolished by the Dodgers who had enjoyed a fairytale run to the finals.
After surprisingly knocking off the Mets in the NL Championship series, no one gave LA much of a chance of beating the 104 win Oakland Athletics who employed several star names such as Mark McGwire and Jose Canseco within their ranks.
In spite of this, the Dodgers saw off the Athletics in a tight game one before defeating Oakland in a gentleman sweep five game series to the surprise of absolutely everyone in attendance.
- The Miracle Mets – 1969 Series:
After a tough first eight seasons of existence where the Mets failed to secure any winning records, New York suddenly found themselves in the playoff picture after a 100-62 record to end off the regular season.
Following this dramatic turnaround, the Mets soon advanced to the World Series where they met the Baltimore Orioles who had won an impressive 109 games that season.
Not one single passionate baseball fan could have ever predicted that the Mets would reach the finals, with New York shockingly dethroning the Orioles in just five games after losing the opening contest, earning the ballclub its first title in franchise history.