The Dodgers defeated the Tampa Bay Rays 3-1, winning their first championship since 1988. Wow, that actually happened. Aside from winning the whole damn thing, here are three takeaways from last night’s game.
Mookie freaking Betts
How many times do I have to say it? We have him for another 12 years. I’ve written so much about him in the past, and for good reason. His bat was kind of quiet this World Series, but boy did he choose the right day for it to come alive.
After the Dodgers were pretty much hit-less through the first five innings, Austin Barnes singled to put the tying run on base. We’ll get to this section a little later. After a pitching change, Mookie Betts stepped to the plate. On a 2-0 pitch, Betts scorched a 95-mph fastball for a double, putting runners on third and second.
A wild pitch scored Barnes, tying the game and advancing Betts to third. World Series MVP Corey Seager stepped into the box, grounding one to first base. As we’ve seen all postseason, Betts’ speed can win you games. Well, it did last night. Betts scored from third, sliding into home to beat the tag for the go ahead run.
Don’t worry, he had enough time for one final hit. It ended up being a big one, as he hit this solo shot in the eighth to give the Dodgers a two-run cushion.
The bullpen SHOVED
On Monday while speaking with the media, manager Dave Roberts said he hoped Tony Gonsolin would give him five or six innings for his Game 6 start. Well, he only got 1⅔ innings out of the rookie. It would be a bullpen game yet again, as Roberts would need to get more than seven innings from his relievers.
Boy, did they deliver.
Six different relievers combined for 7⅓ innings. They didn’t allow a single run, and only issued two hits to the Rays. Oh, and they struck out 12. Dylan Floro came in for the huge strike out of Randy Arozarena in the second inning, Alex Wood gave the Dodgers two massive innings, and oh course... topped off with Julio Urías.
What a phenomenal outing from every reliever in that bullpen.
The Rays pulled a.... Dave Roberts?
I’m still trying to figure out how or why this makes sense, but it helped the Dodgers win so I’m more than okay with it. The Dodgers had no answer for Blake Snell this series for the most part. He looked untouchable in his first start, and he looked nearly untouchable last night.
Entering the sixth inning, he had only allowed one hit. Just one. His pitch count was low, as he was just about to reach 70. It looked like he was going to go at least eight innings for Tampa Bay. Then, Barnes singled to give LA a base runner. It turns out, that would be the final hitter Snell would see all season.
Rays manager Kevin Cash removed Snell from the game, replacing him with Nick Anderson. The move obviously backfired (as mentioned earlier) and the Dodgers took the lead. I still can’t believe they took Snell out of the game. He was dealing. He was untouchable for most of the night. Just like that, his night was done.
Snell didn’t sound too thrilled about the move following the game, and I don’t blame him.
"For most of that game I was dominating... I wanted to keep going."— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) October 28, 2020
Blake Snell discusses his reaction to being pulled in the 6th inning. pic.twitter.com/hPgK5gMVy9
Luckily for the Dodgers, he was pulled, and they are now World Series champions.
No, I will never get tired of saying that!