Despite Las Vegas giving only a 35 percent chance of either the Los Angeles Dodgers or Houston Astros winning the World Series, Breitbart Sports’ Dodgers, Astros Shaping Up As Likely World Series Match-up headline 77 days ago proved prophetic with the Astros 4-0 win over the New York Yankees Saturday night.
While Las Vegas calculated a 35 percent chance of either winning the World Series, those same numbers actually calculated only an 11 percent chance of the Los Angeles Dodgers and Astros BOTH making the World Series. The odds subsequently dropped with the Cleveland Indians late season surge and then improved when Astros acquired Justin Verlander seconds before the trade deadline. However, if you wanted to place a wager based on the Breitbart Sports article at the time those Vegas odds stood 8-to-1 against you regarding an Astros-Dodgers match-up 11 weeks later.
While the season MVP will go to either the Yankees’ Aaron Judge or the Astros’ Jose Altuve, Verlander eclipsed the postseason heroics of both. The late-season acquisition won the series MVP. Both Judge and Altuve hit home runs and starred with the glove, with the 6-foot-7 Yankee rookie twice crashing into the wall to grab potential home runs and the 5-foot-6 (maybe) Astro turning nifty double plays and making diving stops.
However, in Game 2 Verlander threw 93 strikes, the second most in a playoff game behind a Curt Schilling start, in a 2-1 complete game win, then came back and shut down the Yankees for another seven innings in Game 6 with the Astros on the brink of elimination.
A sign at Game 7 said “Key Kate, we love Justin too,” in reference to Verlander’s fiancee Kate Upton, who encouraged Verlander to sign off on the August 31 trade to Houston, which was approved seconds before the deadline.
The series marked only the fifth one that the home team won all seven games. In the 7th game of a playoff series, the home team wins 80 percent of the time in the NBA, and 60 percent of the time in the NHL, but only 50 percent in baseball. The Astros win at home Saturday makes the home team 54-54 all-time in Game 7.
The Los Angeles Dodgers were so dominant, losing only one game in two series, that they had to wait for Saturday night to see who would come to play them Tuesday night in Game 1, in what will be the first World Series’ match-up of 100-win teams since the 1970 Fall Classic between the Baltimore Orioles and Cincinnati Reds.