What is the World Series and how does it work? World Series explained
From the format to the origins of the name, our guide contains everything you need to know about the MLB World Series.
What is the World Series?
The World Series is the annual championship game of Major League Baseball (MLB), the biggest professional baseball league in America.
It is contested by the champions of the National League and the American League. These are the two leagues that make up MLB.
The World Series comes at the end of the MLB playoffs, a postseason tournament that follows the 162-game regular season.
How does the World Series work?
The format of the World Series is a best-of-seven playoff, with the first team to win four games declared champions.
The team with home-field advantage hosts the first two games and the final two games, with the other team hosting game three, four and five.
Why is it called the World Series?
It is said that the World Series was originally named the ‘World’s Series’ after the newspaper New York World decided to sponsor the game.
This account is disputed, however, with some saying it was just promoted as the ‘World’s Championship Series’ or ‘World’s Series’ for short.
It has been known as the World Series since the National League and American League merged to form Major League Baseball in 1903.
Where does the World Series take place?
The World Series takes place at the home ballparks of the two contesting teams.
Since the series is made up of seven matches, one team has the advantage of hosting four games – this is known as home-field advantage.
Home-field advantage previously alternated between the NL and AL, and then was decided by the winner of the All-Star Game, but the rules changed in 2017.
Since then, home-field advantage has been handed to the team with the better win-loss record from the regular season.
Where will the 2020 World Series take place?
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, all seven games of the 2020 World Series will take place at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas – the home of the Texas Rangers.
This will be the first World Series to be held at a single ballpark since 1944.
Who has won the most World Series titles?
The New York Yankees are the most successful team in World Series history, winning 27 times.
They also hold the record for most World Series appearances with 40.
The St. Louis Cardinals hold the second-best record in the World Series with 11 wins from 19 appearances.
Who has never won the World Series?
There are six current MLB teams that have never won a World Series: San Diego Padres, Texas Rangers, Milwaukee Brewers, Tampa Bay Rays, Colorado Rockies and Seattle Mariners.
The Mariners are the only current MLB team to have never made a World Series appearance.
Who won the 2019 World Series?
The Washington Nationals won the 2019 World Series, defeating the Houston Astros by four games to three.
That was the Nationals’ very first World Series win, in their very first appearance.
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