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World Series Preview: LA Dodgers vs. Tampa Bay Rays

One of the most talked about and anticipated sporting events to take place each year is the MLB World Series.  Even as this season was somewhat abbreviated by the COVID-19 situation, the playoffs did go off without a hitch, culminating in the ALCS and the NLCS going the full seven games each and providing a good strong dose of MLB to determine the league champions.

The games also prepared both fans and players alike for the big event, Major League Baseball’s annual World Series.

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The World Series Championship Race Begins

Over on the American League side we find the low-budget Tampa Bay Rays sitting in the Champions chair this year having just defeated the mighty Houston Astros in a hard fought seven-game series that went down to the wire.

At the opposite end of the spending scale we find the Los Angeles Dodgers who have been to the World Series 3 out of 4 years in a row now, but LA still has not won an MLB World Series Championship since 1988.  That’s a long time for one of the oldest and most valued baseball franchises in the nation.  Way too long for some of the Dodgers most loyal fans.  But hope springs eternal and here we go again in 2020.

Los Angeles won the NLCS by defeating a pesky Atlanta Braves team that just would not go away.  That series also went the full seven games before the Dodgers came out victorious.

Deep In The Heart Of Texas

Now, league championships have been won and Game 1 of the 2020 World Series is set for tonight in Arlington, TX, at the new and beautiful Globe Life Stadium, where the NLCS was played.   The stadium boasts a retractable roof that stayed open for the entire NLCS series even through one evening of blustering winds.  However, rain should not become a factor in this year’s series since the roof can be closed again in short order if necessary.

Tampa Bay triumphed over the Astros last week out in San Diego at Petco Park so they will have to travel and setup for the new venue.  The Dodgers have already settled in there in Arlington in their own ‘bubble’ with players and many of their families being sequestered in a local hotel where the strongest possible measures are being taken to avoid a COVID-19 infection, and so far it has worked out well for LA.

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Tyler Glasnow will be the starting pitcher for the Rays in game one of the 2020 World Series.  He shined during the regular season boasting a record of 5-1, but finishing with an ERA of 4.08.

The Dodgers will start with their long time ace, Clayton Kershaw, who, even though he is headed for the MLB Hall of Fame and is one of the most famous pitchers in baseball, has had his problems in post season play, which has got to have Dodger fans, not to mention manager Dave Roberts and the coaching staff, just a little on edge again this year.

It’s Time For A Winner

Unlike the ALCS/NLCS series, which took place in a blistering seven days in a row, and probably caused some indigestion for the team managers, the World Series will follow the traditional pattern of two games in which LA will be the home team and bat last, then a day off for travel and then three games in which Tampa Bay will be the home team and bat last.  Then follows another day off and then, if necessary, we will have Games 6 and 7 with the Dodgers once again being the home team and batting last.

In this era of concern over COVID-19 and the constant bombardment of political ads, baseball fans are looking forward to a few hours when they can forget their troubles and just enjoy some good MLB baseball games in the 2020 World Series.

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Erik is a writer and a sports nut who has had the good fortune to be able to experience a wide variety of world sports action up close and personal. He enjoys staying on top of the changing world of athletics and capitalizing on his writing skills to offer a unique take on what's going on in the ever-changing athletics ecosystem.

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