Baseball is a terrific game because it is a lot like life, you can never be perfect, but when you are it is sweet, and when you are not there is room for forgiveness. As Ted Williams said, “Baseball is the only field of endeavor where a man can succeed three times out of ten and be considered a good performer.” Ted Williams, a man who hit .406 in 1941.
The 2017 Los Angeles Dodgers fall into the near perfection category as they are pursuing excellence. Their .715 winning percentage, as of Tuesday, August 22, 2017, means that the Dodgers are winning a little more than every seven of ten games that they play. A remarkable feat when you consider that the Arizona Diamondbacks and the Colorado Rockies are having resurgent years with the third and fourth best records in the National League and the sixth and seventh best records in all of Major League Baseball.
The last time the Dodgers had such a high winning percentage and won the World Series was in 1955 with Jackie Robinson, with a .641 winning percentage (154 game season). The next best season came in 1963 with Sandy Koufax, a .611 winning percentage (163 game season). In fact, the Dodgers have not had a season-ending winning percentage above .585 since 1978 and 1985 or above .600 since 1977, when they had a .605 winning percentage. In 1977, the Dodgers lost to the New York Yankees in the World Series four games to two.
However, the Dodgers will have to break a trend of high winning percentage seasons and not winning the World Series. For example, they have lost eleven World Series and tied one where their winning percentage was above .600. By the way, the Dodgers have lost to the New York Yankees eight times in the World Series, but have won three times (1955, 1963, and 1981). The Dodgers have also lost to the New York Giants, Boston Red Sox, Cleveland Indians, Baltimore Orioles, and Oakland Athletics, and they tied the Louisville Colonels once. The Dodgers have won the World Series by beating the New York Yankees (three times), Chicago White Sox, Minnesota Twins, and Oakland Athletics.
The Dodgers franchise has lost twelve World Series titles, the Yankees have lost thirteen. Will we see the Dodgers and Yankees meet for the twelfth time in the 2017 World Series? Will the Dodgers push the Yankees to fourteen World Series loses (to go along with their twenty-seven World Series championships)? The twelfth meeting could be a special one where sixty-six games to date in the World Series playing against each other is already record-breaking and spectacular.
The 2017 Los Angeles Dodgers, with 88 wins and 35 loses to date, are a special team. We are witnessing history. Time will tell if the Dodgers will make further history by winning the World Series.