Dodgers clinch first World Series title since 1988

The L.A. Dodgers won the World Series after defeating the Tampa Bay Rays. (Kelly Gavin/Getty Images)The L.A. Dodgers won the World Series after defeating the Tampa Bay Rays. (Kelly Gavin/Getty Images)

Thomas Ashworth, Correspondent

On Tuesday night, the Los Angeles Dodgers won the 2020 World Series over the Tampa Bay Rays. In a dramatic 4-2 series win, the Dodgers won their first World Series pennant since 1989, when they dominated the Oakland Athletics in a 4-1 series win. 

The Dodgers have had a recent history of coming up short in the playoffs, most notably in losing the National League Division Series to the eventual World Series champion Washington Nationals. Los Angeles came up short in the 2018 World Series to the Boston Red Sox, as well as the 2017 World Series against the Houston Astros.

Game one of the 2020 World Series was a dominant 8-3 victory by the Dodgers, featuring a dominant pitching performance by Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw. Known for his postseason struggles, Kershaw shocked fans and threw six full innings, allowing two hits, one earned run, one walk and struck out eight. 

Tampa Bay’s starting pitcher Tyler Glasnow had struggles, pitching 4 1/3 innings. Despite striking out eight, he allowed three hits, six walks and had six earned runs. 

The Dodgers offense came alive, with leadoff hitter and MVP candidate Mookie Betts going 2-4 with a home run and a single. Chris Taylor, who was the 2017 NCLS MVP, went 2-3 with two singles. 2019 NL MVP Cody Bellinger went 1-4, hitting a two-run home run in the fourth inning. On the Rays offense, center fielder Kevin Keirmaier went 2-3 with a home run and a single. With a Dodgers win, they led the series 1-0.

Game two showcased both teams offenses in a 6-4 Tampa Bay Rays victory. Rays second baseman, Brandon Lowe, provided a spark for the Rays offense. Lowe went 2-5, hitting two home runs. With this feat, Lowe became the first Ray to hit two home runs in a World Series game. Right fielder Manuel Margot went 2-3 with two singles. 

On the Dodgers offense, Chris Taylor, Will With and Corey Seager all had a home run. Rays starting pitcher, Blake Snell, pitched ​4 ⅔ innings and allowed two hits, four walks and had two earned runs while striking out nine. Tony Gonsolin started for the Dodgers and only pitched 1 ⅓ innings, accounting for one hit, one walk and an earned run while recording one strikeout. His one hit was Brandon Lowe’s home run in the first inning. After this game, the series was tied 1-1.

Dodgers starting pitcher Walker Beuhler dominated in game three. With help from the powerful Dodgers offense, LA won 6-2. Walker Beuhler threw a full six innings, only accounting for three hits, one walk and one earned run while striking out ten. Rays pitcher Charlie Morton started for Tampa Bay, going 4 ⅓ innings. Despite striking out six, he had seven hits, one walk and had five earned runs. Mookie Betts showed out again, going 2-5 with two singles. Justin Turner also had a great game, going 2-5 with a home run and a double. This win put the Dodgers ahead in the series 2-1. 

Game four was an offensive showdown between the two teams in an 8-7 Rays victory. The Rays offense came alive, most notably Randy Arozarena, Kevin Kiermaier and Brandon Phillips. Arozarena went 3-4 with two singles and a home run. Kiermaier went 2-4 with a home run and a single. Brandon Phillips hit the walk-off single that allowed the Rays to win the game.

On the Dodgers offense, both Corey Seager and Justin Turner went 4-5. Seager had a home run and three singles, while Turner had a home run, two singles and a double. This walk-off victory by the Rays tied up the series 2-2.

In a rematch of the game one pitchers, this strikeout-filled game ended with a 4-2 Dodgers victory. Clayton Kershaw pitched 5 ⅔ innings in game five, allowing five hits, two walks and two earned runs while striking out six. Tyler Glasnow pitched five full innings, allowing six hits, three walks and four earned runs while striking out seven. 

Both offenses were quieter than previous games. Most notably on the Dodgers, Max Muncy went 2-3 with a home run and a single, and Joc Pederson went 1-2 with a home run. This victory put the Dodgers ahead 3-2 in the series.

Despite a dominant performance by Rays’ starting pitcher Blake Snell, the Dodgers ran away game six by a score of 3-1 and subsequently won the series. Snell pitched 5 ⅓ innings, allowing two hits, no walks and an earned run while striking out nine. Despite a rocky start by Dodgers pitcher Tony Gonsolin, the Dodgers pitching staff combined for a dominant 5 hits, 2 walks and 1 earned run while striking out sixteen. Mookie Betts went 2-4, hitting a home run and a double, while Seager had a run batted in from a fielder’s choice. 

After the game ended, Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop Corey Seager was voted the 2020 World Series MVP.

In the World Series, Seager had a .400 batting average with two home runs and five runs batted in. He was previously voted the 2020 National League Championship MVP, after hitting .310 with five home runs and eleven runs batted in.

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