The Chicago Cubs last won the World Series six calendar years before the beginning of World War I.
The Cleveland Indians last claimed the World Series title three calendar years after the end of World War II. (And the entire city of Cleveland endured a complete professional sports drought for 52 years from 1964-2016, until the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers won the title earlier this year.)
Those are the leaders in the MLB clubhouse for longest Fall Classic droughts among teams competing in this year’s National League and American Legion championship series matchups.
But the other teams in baseball’s Final Four have also waited long enough since they last claimed victory at the highest level of their sport.
Los Angeles’ Dodgers won the Series in 1988. Just a few years afterward, the Toronto Blue Jays won their most recent World Series titles in back-to-back fashion in 1992 and 1993.
So, we don’t have any reason this October (and November) to say, “They always win. I’m cheering for someone else.”
When the San Francisco Giants bowed out to the Cubs, their streak of even-year championships ended. They had quite a roll going, too, with World Series titles in 2010, 2012 and 2014.
There are also no Yankees, Red Sox or Cardinals around this time.
So we have a chance to experience a unique Fall Classic in which any matchup brings us something different.
Either scenario including the Blue Jays is different because it brings Canadian baseball, and all of those fans from “Up North” into the equation.
Then there’s Dodgers-Indians, a matchup of longtime franchises with a very East Coast vs. West Coast feel.
My favorite scenario is Cubs-Indians. We’d see a team win their first World Series in 68 or 108 years. In the case of the Cubs, they’d also wipe out a streak of seven straight Series losses that came between 1908 and 1945, their last trip to the finals. This matchup is what I’ll be pulling for in the next couple weeks.
As a fan, it’s always great fun to see history made, especially when a historic winless streak is snapped.