Game One – Destroyer of Narratives
Past performance does not indicate future performance
Narrative One – They said Mookie Betts couldn’t hit in the world series because he had this triple stat line in the 2018 World Series of – 217/308/391- in 26 plate appearances. In the first World Series game of 2020, Mookie had two hits, walked once, stole two bases in one inning and was the spark plug in this game, just as he was during his during his HOF caliber career. The best part of Mookie Betts stealing two bases in the key fifth inning was the graphic that Fox showed which was that Babe Ruth was the last player to steal two bases in World Series back in 1921. While looking that up, I just found out they played eight games in the 1921 World Series and the NYY lost to the NYG in eight games. What the hell? I also found out via Jon Weisman that Babe Ruth ended the 1926 World Series by being thrown out trying to steal 2nd base. When looking up that game I noticed that Grover Cleveland Alexander pitched the 8th and 9th innings which made me recall an old timey movie about a HOF pitcher who was kind of a drunk who saved the day in the World Series, and Clye Alt tweeted this to me
Reagan starred in a film about Grover Cleveland Alexander. "The Winning Team". Saw it a long, long time ago.— Clyle Alt (@clylealt) October 21, 2020
which turned out to be the movie I was thinking about. How about that?
Narrative Two – They said Cody Bellinger struggled in the World Series and they were correct, coming into this World Series Cody had 45 plate appearances and an OPS below .500. He had been horrible, but in his 2nd at-bat of this World Series he started the scoring with a monster home run and also made another home run robbing catch in LCF, giving the Dodgers four home run robbing catches in this postseason. I love Globe Life Field.
Narrative Three – Clayton Kershaw hasn’t had success in the World Series. The problem with this narrative is that most of it is based on his collapse in game five of the 2017 World Series which we now know was the game the Astros drum banged their way to huge comebacks. They simply have to throw that game out, and when you do you still have his game one start against Boston where he was clobbered. So, the narrative was kind of true, but against the Rays, Clayton was almost perfect, the only blip a solo home run.<How good was Clayton last night? Historically good.
From @PaulHembo: Clayton Kershaw’s swing-and-miss wasn’t just significant for him personally, it was significant historically: In Game 1, Kershaw became the only pitcher to generate a 50% swing-and-miss rate in a World Series start. (Pitch-by-pitch data available since 1988)— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) October 21, 2020