The Dodgers got a home run from Mookie Betts in their Game 6 win over the Rays on Tuesday night, continuing a power surge that lasted all season and into the playoffs. Betts joined a select group of nine Dodgers to hit home runs in a World Series-clinching game.
Home runs were a major weapon for the Dodgers in 2020, leading MLB with 118 home runs during the regular season, then 30 more in 18 games in the postseason. Their streak of eight straight games with at least two home runs through Game 5 of the World Series is the longest in MLB postseason history.
Here’s a look at every home run hit by the Dodgers in a game that clinched a World Series for the franchise:
In their second year in Los Angeles, the Dodgers closed out the White Sox with a blowout at Comiskey Park in Game 6. Duke Snider hit a two-run shot off starter Early Wynn in the third inning, then Wally Moon hit a two-run shot in the fourth against reliever Dick Donovan that made the game 8-0.
Pinch-hitter Chuck Essegian capped the scoring with a solo home run in the ninth, as the Dodgers cruised to a title with a 9-3 win.
Trying to sweep the Yankees in Game 4 at Dodger Stadium, right fielder Frank Howard homered against Whitey Ford in the bottom of the fifth to give the Dodgers a 1-0 lead. The Dodgers won 2-1 behind Howard and a complete game from Sandy Koufax.
Another Koufax start came two years later, this time in Game 7 against the Twins in Minnesota on just two days rest. Koufax did his thing on the mound, and got support from outfielder Lou Johnson, who homered to start the fourth inning against Jim Kaat.
The Dodgers scored two runs in that fourth inning, which was all Koufax needed, securing the team’s fourth championship in 11 years.
Sweet Lou passed away on Sept. 30.
In a shortened season with expanded playoffs (sound familiar?), the Dodgers were comeback kings during the postseason. They were down 2-0 in the best-of-5 division series against Houston, down 2-1 in the best-of-5 NLCS against the Expos, and lost the first two games of the World Series against the Yankees, who also beat them in the 1977 and 1978 Fall Classics.
After winning five elimination games to get the World Series, the Dodgers shrugged off the World Series deficit by winning four in a row. They closed out the title with a 9-2 blowout in Game 6 at Yankee Stadium. Pedro Guerrero was 3-for-5 with a triple, plus this ninth-inning home run against Rudy May to conclude the scoring.
Guerrero was one of three Dodgers to win co-MVP of that World Series, along with Ron Cey and Steve Yeager.
Up 3-1 with supernova Orel Hershiser on the mound, the Dodgers closed out the series with a pair of home runs from unlikely sources against the mighty A’s in Game 5.
Mickey Hatcher in the first inning hit a two-run shot off Storm Davis, his second homer of the series after filling in for an injured Kirk Gibson. Hatcher hit one home run during the regular season, and followed this blast by mimicking the Bash Brothers’ forearm bash, to hilarious effect:
In the fifth inning, up came Mike Davis, the Dodgers’ disastrous free agent signing that season. After averaging 22 home runs the previous three seasons with Oakland, the Dodgers inked Davis to a two-year deal, and he proceeded to hit .196 with two home runs in 108 games for the Dodgers in 1988.
Davis totally redeemed his season with his two-out walk in Game 1 of the World Series, setting the stage for the greatest single play in Dodgers history. In this one, Storm Davis was still on the mound with Hatcher on first, and Mike Davis took him deep for a home run to widen the Dodgers’ lead to 4-1.
My favorite part of the Davis home run was Vin Scully’s absolute surprise that Davis got the green light with a 3-0 count, beginning his call with a startled, “They let him swing!”
Welcome to the club.