World Series Preview
October 23, 2018
The most anticipated event of the MLB season is finally here.\
The World Series will begin tonight, as the back-to-back National League conference champion Los Angeles Dodgers will travel to Fenway Park to take on the Boston Red Sox. The Red Sox handled the 2017 World Series champion Houston Astros in five games in the American League Championship, while the Dodgers had to go to seven games against the Milwaukee Brewers, who were led by former Miami Marlin Christian Yelich. Yelich is considered as a frontrunner in the MVP race, but it wasn’t enough to get past the Dodgers.
The Red Sox are led by right fielder Mookie Betts, who finished the regular season with the best batting average and slugging percentage in the league (.346 and .640 respectively). The Red Sox also received several valuable contributions from designated hitter J.D. Martinez, who led the league in runs batted in, with 130 runs, and came in second for the most home runs (43), slugging percentage (.629) and highest batting average (.330).
The Red Sox finished the regular season with the best record not only in the American League, but the whole MLB. The Red Sox went 108-54 on their way to their tenth AL East division title. The Red Sox had a bye during the Wild Card round and handled their bitter rivals, the New York Yankees, in the divisional round, winning the series 3-1. The Red Sox are hoping for their ninth World Series victory.
Meanwhile, across the country, the Los Angeles Dodgers had a much tougher road through the playoffs. The Dodgers narrowly won the NL West with a record of 92-71 (the second place Colorado Rockies went 91-72) and secured the second seed in the National League (they had the third best record in the NL, but got a higher seed as they won their division, while the 95-68 Chicago Cubs did not). While the Dodgers took down the Atlanta Braves in four games during the divisional round, they almost lost to the Milwaukee Brewers, going to a full 7 game series. However, the Dodgers prevailed and look to win their first World Series in 30 years, which would be their seventh in franchise history.
The Dodgers are relying on their excellent pitching staff to bring home the championship. The Dodgers bullpen had the second best ERA (earned runs average) in the MLB with a stellar 3.38 (for reference, the average ERA in the MLB is 4.14). The Dodgers also only gave up 610 runs this year, also the second best in the league.
It sure is looking to be a tightly contested World Series this year. No matter who wins the title, this series is sure to go down in the history books.