Dodgers Win World Series With 3-1 Game 6 Victory on Questionable Decision
During the 2020 postseason, we've occasionally written takeaway articles for quick postgame reactions. But there's really only one takeaway that matters from Tuesday's Game 6.
The Dodgers are World Series champions.
Finally. The 32-year drought is quenched. Veterans such as Clayton Kershaw, Justin Turner, and Kenley Jansen won't go through their careers without winning a championship ring.
And this time, it was the opposing manager's decision that determined the ballgame. Dodgers fans were dreading Dave Roberts making the wrong move. But Rays manager Kevin Cash arguably cost his team a chance to extend the series to a Game 7 with an inexplicable choice in the sixth inning.
Blake Snell was outstanding for Tampa Bay. The Dodgers had no answer for him. Of the 16 outs Snell recorded in 5 1/3 innings, nine of them were strikeouts.
But after Austin Barnes got only the second hit for Los Angeles, Cash pulled Snell from the game before facing Mookie Betts and going through the Dodgers lineup for a third time.
Never mind that Betts had struck out in each of his previous plate appearances versus Snell. So did Corey Seager and Justin Turner, for that matter. Whatever plan that Cash and the Rays coaching staff had said to get Snell out of the game and bring in Nick Anderson.
The decision immediately backfired.
Anderson left a fastball up that Betts smashed for a double. Barnes advanced to third and scored on a wild pitch by Anderson. Seager followed with a hard grounder to first base, but Betts was running on contact and easily beat the throw home for the go-ahead run.
And for a punctuation mark on the Dodgers' 2020 season, Betts led off the eighth inning with a home run that provided an important extra run for whoever finished the game for the Dodgers.
That last man on the mound was Julio Urias, who completed a fantastic postseason with 2 1/3 perfect innings. No runs, no hits, no way anybody else was going to finish this game. Urias also notched four strikeouts -- the last two of which clinched the seventh World Series title in Dodgers history.
One bittersweet note: Justin Turner was removed from the game in the eighth inning due to a positive COVID-19 test, according to Fox Sports. Presumably, that's why everyone was masked up on the field during the celebration and trophy presentation.
But no need to wonder how Turner's positive would've affected the Dodgers for a Game 7. There won't be one! Enjoy the win, Dodgers fans. It was a long, long time coming. Excellence was rewarded. The best team won.
Ian Casselberry watchdogs sports media for Awful Announcing. He’s covered baseball for SB Nation, Yahoo Sports and MLive, and was one of Bleacher Report’s first lead MLB writers. Please follow Ian on Twitter @iancass and give him a listen at The Podcass.