Seeing a Game One blowout in the World Series is a fairly rare site. In fact, prior to last night’s 8-1 win by the Red Sox over the Cardinals, there had been only 10 World Series Game Ones that were decided by seven runs or more.
Here’s a look at those 10 seven runs or more blowouts in previous World Series Game Ones.
2007: Boston over Colorado 13-1 (largest margin of victory in Game One of a World Series)
2001: Arizona over NY Yankees 9-1
1996: Atlanta over NY Yankees 12-1
1980: Cincinnati over Oakland 7-0
1987: Minnesota over St. Louis 10-1
1982: Milwaukee over St. Louis 10-0
1959: Chicago White Sox over LA Dodgers 10-0
1945: Chicago Cubs over Detroit 9-0
1937: NY Yankees over NY Giants 8-1
1919: Cincinnati over Chicago White Sox 9-1
Notice that getting blown out in Game One has happened before to the Cards; they have now lost three Game Ones in the World Series by seven runs or more (most in World Series history).
In the 109-year history of the Fall Classic, Game One has traditionally been a close game. Thirty-eight times (34.9%) the first game of the World Series ended in a one-run game. In just over 51% of the World Series Game Ones, the margin of victory was either one of two runs.
Finally, how will the Cardinals rebound from last night’s drubbing? If the past is any indication, it might not be very well. In the previous 10 blowouts in Game One, the team that won Game One also won Game Two seven times. The 1937 NY Yankees were the only World Series team to win both the first and second games of the World Series by seven runs or more. We can probably expect a closer game in Game Two, but you have to go back to 1982 to see a team rebound from a Game One blowout and win Game Two… in ’82 the Milwaukee Brewers won Game One 10-0. Their opponents, the Cardinals, took Game Two with a 5-4 victory.
Can the Cardinals of 2013 repeat what happened in the 1982 World Series?
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Every player wants to have a great game. But having a great game when your team loses can dampen the reward of a great performance.
This past weekend’s NFL games featured an interesting contrast to the above scenario. In the Cincinnati-Detroit game, won by the Bengals 27-24, two receivers, A.J. Green of the Bengals and Calvin Johnson of the Lions, each had 155 yards in receptions. Green’s team walked away with the win, Johnson’s team the loss.
For Johnson, losing a contest when you have a big game has become a little too common. Johnson has 11 games where he gained 150 or more yards receiving in his career. Of those 11, the Lions have won only three. Those eight losses have Johnson knocking on the door of a dubious honor.
Let’s go back to 1970 (the merger of the NFL and AFL). There have been 230 different receivers who have gained 150 or more yards receiving in a game (regular season and playoffs included) that his team lost. Ninety of those players have lost two or more games where he had 150-plus yards receiving. Hall of Famer Jerry Rice had nine such games, tops on the list. Of course, he also leads the NFL with 32 games with 150 or more yards receiving.
Calvin Johnson, with his eighth 150-yard game where his team lost is now tied for second on this list. Here’s a look at the receivers whose teams have lost the most games when they had 150 or more yards receiving in a contest. Noted in parenthesis is the total number of 150+ yard games for each of these players.
150+ yard games receiving where team lost, player
9: Jerry Rice (32)
8: Tim Brown (13) , Isaac Bruce (15) , Calvin Johnson (11) , Steve Smith (14)
7: James Lofton (12)
6:Henry Ellard (12), Terrell Owens (18)
5: Torry Holt (12), Chad Johnson (7)
4: Wes Chandler (6), Marvin Harrison (11) Vincent Jackson (4), Brandon Marshall (6), Stanley Morgan (6), Andre Rison (7)
There have been 19 teams so far in 2013 where a player had 150 or more yards in receiving yards. Teams are 8-11 in those games.
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