Milestones, pedigree highlight Fall Classic
October, 24, 2012
By ESPN Stats & Information | ESPN.com
Leon Halip/Getty ImagesGame 1 starter Justin Verlander hopes to lead the Tigers to their first World Series title since 1984.
Reigning AL Cy Young Award winner and MVP Justin Verlander takes the mound in Game 1 against Barry Zito, who won the Cy Young in 2002 with the Oakland Athletics.
It's the fourth matchup between starters who previously won the Cy Young in World Series Game 1 history and all have come since 1995.
The Giants are making their 19th appearance in the Fall Classic. That's second only to the Yankees who have been there 40 times.
The Giants are trying to win their seventh World Series and second in the last three seasons.
Prior to winning it all in 2010 over the Texas Rangers, the Giants had lost the World Series three times since moving to San Francisco in 1958.
History tells us the Giants stand a good chance of winning the series.
Since the LCS format went to best-of-seven in 1985, this is the fourth time that a Fall Classic will feature a team that swept its LCS and a team that went the full seven games in its LCS.
In each of the three previous instances, the team that went the distance handily won the World Series (2007 Red Sox swept Rockies, 2006 Cardinals beat Tigers in five games, 1988 Dodgers beat A's in five games).
However according to 10,000 simulations by Accuscore, the Tigers have a 72 percent chance of winning the series and a 48 percent chance to win it in five or six games.
The Tigers haven't won the World Series since Sparky Anderson, Jack Morris and company defeated the San Diego Padres in five games in 1984. Justin Verlander was not quite two years old then.
Jim Leyland is trying to do what Sparky Anderson did in 1984, win a World Series in both leagues.
Leyland won his first World Series with the Florida Marlins in 1997 then lost in 2006 with the Tigers. In fact, Detroit has been involved in the only two instances of a manager winning in both leagues as Tony La Russa became the second to do it in 2006 with the St. Louis Cardinals in their win over the Tigers.
Miguel Cabrera is trying to become the third Triple Crown winner to go on and win the World Series. Frank Robinson (1966 Orioles) and Mickey Mantle (1956 Yankees) are the only two to pull it off at this point.
Although the two teams have never previously met in the World Series, they’ve met in four regular-season series in interleague play, all three-game series, in 2003, 2005, 2008 and 2011. The Giants won seven of those 12 games.