The Atlanta Braves were the National League wild-card winners for this year’s MLB playoffs, and they won their first-ever World Series game against the Dodgers. The series victory is only the second time in franchise history that a team has reached back to back World Series games after losing each of them during their inaugural season
The Atlanta Braves beat the Dodgers 4-3 to force a Game 7 in National League Championship Series. The victory was made possible by four solo home runs from their lineup, including one that broke the stadium’s video screen after it hit off of a fan sitting on top of an advertising billboard next to left field.
The “2018 world series winner” is a team that was not expected to make it this far, but they have. The Atlanta Braves are the 2018 World Series champs after upsetting the Dodgers in the National League Championship Series.
ATLANTA, Ga. — The Atlanta Braves are returning to the World Series for the first time since 1999.
Eddie Rosario extended his incredible postseason with a three-run homer barely inside the foul pole in the fourth inning, breaking a 1-1 tie and leading the Atlanta Braves to a 4-2 victory against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Saturday. The Braves defeated the Dodgers in a six-game National League Championship Series one season after losing to them in a seven-game series.
In the seventh inning, the Dodgers had the tying runs on base with no one out, but lefty reliever Tyler Matzek came in and struck out three consecutive batters to electrify a raucous Truist Park crowd. Mookie Betts, the previous MVP, was the last of the three.
Rosario, the NLCS MVP, went 2-for-3 with a walk and ended the series with a.560 batting average, 1.040 slugging percentage, three home runs, and nine RBIs in six games.
He isn’t finished, according to Rosario.
“It’s a very amazing time, not only in my work, but in my life,” Rosario remarked, “but I want more.” “My ultimate goal is to win the World Series.”
The Dodgers’ championship defense comes to an end with this setback, since they won the World Series following a pandemic-shortened season last year. Los Angeles, who won 106 games during the regular season and defeated the 107-win San Francisco Giants in the NL Division Series, came to a sudden end.
Instead, it’s the 88-win Braves who win the National League pennant after a season in which they didn’t break.500 until August 6. According to Elias, it is the most recent first-day-over-.500 date for a World Series-bound club. The previous mark was set on Aug. 3 by a different iteration of the organization, the 1914 Boston Braves, dubbed the “Miracle Braves” by history.
When the playoffs started, the 2021 Braves seemed to be a long shot to break their pennant drought, but nothing about the manner they destroyed the Milwaukee Brewers in the NLDS and the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NLCS seemed remarkable.
After the game, Braves general manager Alex Anthopoulos observed, “Our team had a significant upside the previous two months.” “And if run differential is a factor, the Giants, Los Angeles, and we were all in the top three. We believed we have the necessary skills.”
The championship is the next step for a team that started a protracted reconstruction in the middle of the decade and resurfaced as a contender in 2018. This was the Braves’ fourth consecutive postseason appearance. Saturday’s victory ended the franchise’s 12-year wait for a World Series trip, tying the Athletics for the longest such skid.
During Atlanta’s fourth-inning comeback, Braves starter Ian Anderson held the Dodgers to one run across four innings before giving way to a pinch-hitter. After Anderson, A.J. Minter entered the game and promptly retired all six hitters he faced, striking out four.
The domination of Minter and Matzek, two lefty relievers from Texas, followed a flawless ninth inning by closer Will Smith and extended the Atlanta bullpen’s excellent postseason performance. With runners in scoring position, opponents are currently 0-for-15 against Matzek in the playoffs, with 11 strikeouts.
Manager Brian Snitker commented, “What Minter and Matzek accomplished today was really outstanding.” “Matzek has been doing it throughout the series. I’d want to chop up that MVP award and give it to him, because he was just outstanding throughout the series.”
Freddie Freeman, a Braves franchise cornerstone, earned his first trip to the Fall Classic with the victory. Freeman, who was drafted in the second round of the 2007 draft by the Braves, was the only player they preserved when they disassembled their last competing team, signing him to an eight-year contract extension in 2014.
During the early years of that contract, Freeman shone for a series of losing teams, but now that the deal is set to expire after this season, he has also seen the team’s total turnaround.
“I believe this is the epitome of genuine bliss,” Freeman added. “It is, in fact. I honestly don’t know; it hasn’t occurred to me. I’m not sure how I’m feeling.”
The victory was also the icing on the cake for manager Brian Snitker, who has been with the Braves since 1977 and is a lifer. Snitker, who turned 66 during the series, began his career with the company in the minors before being recruited by Hall of Famer Hank Aaron to continue with the organization as a roaming teacher. Before coaching in the majors, he spent years managing in the minors.
Snitker is now at the height of his trade, working for the only company he has ever known.
Snitker said, “I simply sort of sat in my chair and those men flooded me.” “I was just hoping I’d be able to keep it together since there’s a lot going on. It’s definitely something special to be able to experience this after all these years and all you’ve been through.”
The setback for the Dodgers sets off what could be a tumultuous summer for the team, with many key players set to hit free agency. Max Scherzer, Albert Pujols, Corey Seager, Kenley Jansen, Chris Taylor, and Clayton Kershaw are among the pitchers on the list.
Baseball will once again be without a back-to-back champion, thanks to the Dodgers’ failure to repeat. Since the Yankees’ three-year reign from 1998 to 2000, no team has repeated as champions. It’s the longest period in baseball history without a repeat champion.
“The fact that we didn’t achieve our objective is still not lost on any of us,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “However, I have to give credit to the Braves because they just outplayed us.”
The Braves will face the Astros in Game 1 of the World Series on Tuesday at Minute Maid Park in Houston. It’ll feel like a family reunion: Troy Snitker, Snitker’s son, is an Astros hitting instructor.
The Braves have made 16 consecutive playoff appearances without winning a title, which is the longest active drought in baseball. Perhaps that’s what Freeman was thinking when he paused and screamed back at the podium as he walked out of the interview room, trading places with Minter and Matzek.
“Boys, we’re not done yet!” According to Freeman. “There’s still a lot of work to be done.”
Frequently Asked Questions
Did the Braves go to the World Series in 1999?
A: Yes, they did.
How many times did the Braves go to the World Series in the 90s?
A: They went three times in the 90s.
When was the last time Atlanta Braves went to the World Series?
A: The last time the Atlanta Braves went to the World Series was in 1995.
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