The Dodgers and Yankees have played each other in the World Series eleven times, which is the most that any two teams have faced off in the Fall Classic. With their win over the Cubs on Wednesday, the Dodgers clinched their nineteenth trip to the World Series, while the Yankees remain one win away from their 41st American League pennant following their loss last night.
The two baseball titans had their first October clash in 1941. Joe DiMaggio led the Yankees to the series win over their crosstown rivals, who were experiencing October baseball for the first time since 1920. The Yankees, meanwhile, completed a stretch where they won five titles in six years.
A subway series between the two clubs would soon become a regular event, as they met six times over a 10-year period beginning in 1947. DiMaggio once again led the Bombers to victory in 1947 and 1949. Then Mickey Mantle paced them to back-to-back victories in '52 and '53, completing a record five straight championships.
Made famous by Jackie Robinson's steal of home in a Game One loss, the Dodgers finally broke through to take a series from the Yankees in 1955. It was their lone championship while in Brooklyn and only title of the Jackie Robinson era.
Don Larsen's perfect game in 1956 helped the Yankees get payback. Their Game Seven win to clinch the series would be their final October visit to Ebbets Field.
Sandy Koufax won two games to help the Dodgers sweep the 1963 Series. It was the first between the teams after "Dem Bums" left Flatbush for Los Angeles.
Reggie Jackson's three home runs off of three different Dodger pitchers in the decisive sixth game of the '77 Series helped the Yankees regain the world title after a 14-year drought. They won the rematch the following year, while the Dodgers won their lone World Series against the Yankees during the Reggie Jackson era in 1981.
The Yankees are one win away from meeting the Dodgers in the World Series for the twelfth time. The only thing standing in their way is the Houston Astros.
Justin Verlander won his second game of the ALCS, while clutch hitting by Brian McCann and Jose Altuve spoiled the Yankees' clinch party last night. The Yankees send stopper CC Sabathia to the hill tonight, hoping he will propel them into their first World Series since 2009.
Nine of Sabathia's 14 regular season wins followed a Yankees' loss. CC has been great in the postseason as well. He did his part to help the Yankees even the ALDS with Cleveland at one game apiece, leaving with an 8-3 lead in the sixth before the bullpen blew the game. He allowed only two runs in the decisive Game Five to help the Yankees overcome the Indians and get to the ALCS.
Resuming his role as stopper, Sabathia hurled six shutout innings to help the Yankees beat Houston in Game Three on Monday, their first win of the League Championship Series. Now the Yankees call upon the veteran left-hander to start another elimination game and series-clincher.
"It's going to be exciting tomorrow to have the opportunity to go out there and pitch this team into the World Series," Sabathia said after last night's loss.
In a rematch of Game Three, CC will be opposed by Charlie Morton. Yankee hitters roughed up Morton for seven earned runs on six hits in their previous meeting. He didn't make it out of the fourth inning.
Overall, the Bombers (.673 OPS) have out-hit the Astros (.509 OPS) in this series. The Yankees have at least two other things going for them in Game Seven: CC Sabathia is starting, while Justin Verlander is not. New York also has a better bullpen that should be fully rested and ready to go.
The Yankees have done exceptionally well in elimination games this year. Tonight, they aim to become only the fourth team ever to win five in a single postseason. The Dodgers await.
|NEW YORK YANKEES||HOUSTON ASTROS|
|Brett Gardner - LF||George Springer - CF|
|Aaron Judge - RF||Alex Bregman - 3B|
|Didi Gregorius - SS||Jose Altuve - 2B|
|Gary Sanchez - C||Carlos Correa - SS|
|Greg Bird - 1B||Yulieski Gurriel - 1B|
|Starlin Castro - 2B||Evan Gattis - DH|
|Aaron Hicks - CF||Brian McCann - C|
|Todd Frazier - 3B||Marwin Gonzalez - LF|
|Chase Headley - DH||Josh Reddick - RF|
|CC Sabathia - LHP||Charlie Morton - RHP|