An E-6 on George Will's Baseball Trivia Column - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
An E-6 on George Will’s Baseball Trivia Column

In honor of the forthcoming 2015 season, George Will’s latest column is devoted to baseball trivia.

However, I would like to offer a correction on one of his questions.

He asks the reader to identify the only World Series between teams with fewer than 90 regular season wins. In his answer section, Will indicates that this occurred in last year’s World Series between the Kansas City Royals and the San Francisco Giants who won 89 and 88 games, respectively.

However, this was not the first time this had happened in World Series history and I’m surprised that Will overlooked this considering it involved his beloved Chicago Cubs.

The Cubs faced the Boston Red Sox in the 1918 World Series. The Bosox won the AL pennant with only 75 wins while the Cubs won 84 games en route to the NL pennant. The reason for this was that the regular season was ended on September 1st due to the work or fight order handed down by Provost Marshall General Enoch Crowder

Simply put, all men who were employed in “non-essential” occupations had to apply for work in essential occupations or be conscripted into the war. Needless to say, being a baseball player was a non-essential occupation. The original deadline had been July 1918, but the Wilson Administration reluctantly extended the deadline to MLB by two months and extended the deadline further for the Red Sox and Cubs. It is the only World Series not played in October. The Red Sox would win the Series in six games and not win another until 2004. The Cubs have not won the Fall Classic since 1908 and have not appeared in it since 1945.

It would happen again during the strike shortened season of 1981 when the New York Yankees and Los Angeles Dodgers faced each other in the World Series for the 11th time. The Yankees and Dodgers had 59 and 63 wins, respectively. The Dodgers would win the Series in six. Because that season was divided into two halves the teams with two best overall records in the NL East and NL West – the St. Louis Cardinals and Cincinnati Reds did not make the post-season at all. The Cardinals had 59 wins while the Reds won 66 games. St. Louis fans would get their World Series trophy in 1982, but the Reds collapsed and had the worst record in the NL with 101 losses.

Give George Will an E-6 on this one.

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