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Sunday Ephemera: Cleveland on the verge

Rob Carr/Getty Images

With Cleveland one win from winning the World Series over the heavily favoured Cubs, was there a sign ahead of time pointing to this (now likely) outcome? Consider the following:

  • 1985 ALCS: Kansas City defeats Toronto 4-3. Defeat St. Louis 4-3 to win World Series.
  • 1989 ALCS: Oakland defeats Toronto 4-1. Defeat San Francisco 4-0 to win World Series.
  • 1991 ALCS: Minnesota defeats Toronto 4-1. Defeat Atlanta 4-3 to win World Series.
  • 2015 ALCS: Kansas City defeats Toronto 4-2. Defeat New York 4-1 to win World Series.
  • 2016 ALCS: Cleveland defeats Toronto 4-1. Leads Chicago 3-1 in World Series.

Cleveland breaking their 68 year drought would run a different streak to five: no team has ever defeated the Blue Jays in the playoffs and failed to win the World Series. Including 1992-93 when the Jays actually won it themselves, the American League has been victorious every year they've made the playoffs.

The Blue Jays hold another piece of playoff trivia: they're the only American League franchise to advance at least as far as the ALCS every time they've made the playoffs. Their analogue in the NL are the Marlins, who have never even lost a playoff series. An argument could be made for the Mets too, as they had advanced at least as far as the NLCS until losing the Wild Card game this year. Of course, some do not consider that as having made the playoffs in the first place.

A final thought: if Cleveland finishes off the Cubs tonight at Wrigley, then eligible players become free agents as of 9:00 AM tomorrow morning. In other words, today could very be well the last full day that Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion are officially members of the Blue Jays organization.