Odd World Series circumstances mean nothing to title-hungry Dodgers
The Dodgers had lost the World Series two straight seasons when they returned a few years later for another shot with much the same nucleus.
It was 1981, a season shortened almost two months by a players strike, only adding questions about the legitimacy of the World Series champion. The Dodgers, who had lost the World Series in 1977 and ’78 to the Yankees, this time beat their nemesis in six games.
Finally, the talented team from Los Angeles loaded with All-Star talent — Steve Garvey, Ron Cey and Dusty Baker to name a few — could hoist the world championship trophy.
“There was extra incentive from us because of the bitter taste and disappointment of ’77 and ’78,” former Dodgers outfielder Rick Monday told The Post.
When the 2020 World Series begins Tuesday night at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas, much of this latest generation of Dodgers will sense the same kind of urgency, as they face the AL champion Rays.
After reaching the World Series in 2017 and ’18, losing to the Astros and Red Sox, respectively, the Dodgers are back on a mission. Somehow, some way must end a World Series title drought that dates to 1988, when Kirk Gibson’s dramatic home run in Game 1 served as the springboard to an upset series victory over the Athletics.
Justin Turner noted Monday that celebration was somewhat muted after the Dodgers returned to their team hotel following Sunday’s 4-3 victory over the Braves in Game 7 of the NLCS a night earlier. Players converged in an outdoor space at the hotel and focused on what still had to be accomplished.
“A lot of guys were talking baseball and about the series we just went through and different situations and plays that came up,” Turner said. “So although I think we were trying to celebrate it a little bit, everyone’s mind just went straight back to baseball.”
Both team buses were full, according to Turner, for the Dodgers’ optional workout Monday.
Though you could question the validity of the Astros’ World Series title in ’17 after their illegal sign-stealing scheme, which was uncovered last offseason, the official record shows the Dodgers lost the series in seven games.
Source : Mike Puma Link