World Series vs. Super Bowl: Which wins?


We're now on our 47th Super Bowl, if I read the Roman numerals correctly. Because I'm crazy, I thought it would be fun to compare all the Super Bowls to all the World Series: Which event has been more exciting? I've graded each on a scale of 1-10, with much thought and scientific analysis put into each rating.

Super Bowls are classified by the year of the season, not the year the game was played. Let's take a quick churn through history ...


World Series: Orioles over Dodgers in 4

Jim Palmer, Wally Bunker and Dave McNally spin consecutive shutouts as the Dodgers hit .142. Hey, some people like shutouts. Score: 2.

Super Bowl: Packers 35, Chiefs 10

Did you know that no complete tape exists of the first Super Bowl? It's 14-10 at halftime before the NFL champs blow out the AFL champs in a game mostly remembered for past-his-prime reserve receiver Max McGee, out partying the night before, hauling in two TD passes. Score: 3.


World Series: Cardinals over Red Sox in 7

The Impossible Dream season ends a game short. Series goes the distance, but only one one-run game, and Game 7 is a 7-2 blowout as Bob Gibson pitches a complete game and hits a home run. Bob Gibson was good. Score: 6.

Super Bowl: Packers 33, Raiders 14

Coming off their Ice Bowl win against the Cowboys, the Packers dominate in Vince Lombardi’s final game with Green Bay, ending with the memorable image of Lombardi being carried off the field. Score: 3.


World Series: Tigers over Cardinals in 7

Mickey Lolich wins three games, Bob Gibson fans a record 17 batters, and Game 7 is 0-0 through six innings until Curt Flood misplays a Jim Northrup drive into a two-run triple. Score: 7.

Super Bowl: Jets 16, Colts 7

The first game officially known as the Super Bowl and still one of the most legendary, as Joe Namath leads the 18-point underdogs to the upset. Despite its historical significance, let’s be honest: The game isn't that exciting, with the Jets building a 7-0 halftime lead to 16-0. Score: 8.


World Series: Mets over Orioles in 5

Mets score winning runs in the ninth, 10th and eighth innings to cap off their miracle season. Score: 8.

Super Bowl: Chiefs 23, Vikings 7

Most famous for Chiefs coach Hank Stram being miked for the game ("65 toss power trap! What'd I tell ya, boys? 65 toss power trap!"). Vikings commit five turnovers. Score: 2.


World Series: Orioles over Reds in 5

Brooks Robinson cleans up the Big Red Machine with his spectacular defense at third base, and also hits two of Baltimore’s 10 home runs. Score: 3.

Super Bowl: Colts 16, Cowboys 13

It comes down to Jim O’Brien’s field goal with five seconds left, but the game features six interceptions and four lost fumbles. Score: 3.


World Series: Pirates over Orioles in 7

Three games are decided by one run, including the final two. Roberto Clemente hits .414 to win MVP honors. Score: 7.

Super Bowl: Cowboys 24, Dolphins 3

The Cowboys finally shed their choker reputation (since reclaimed). It's 10-3 at halftime, but the Cowboys score on the first possession of the second half and coast. Score: 2.


World Series: A’s over Reds in 7

Six games decided by a single run, but they are all low-scoring affairs without much back and forth action. Unknown Gene Tenace hits four homers and drives in nine. Score: 7.

Super Bowl: Dolphins 14, Redskins 7

How different was pro football in the early ‘70s? The Dolphins complete their unbeaten season by throwing just 11 passes. I guess it was exciting back then. Score: 4.


World Series: A’s over Mets in 7

Willie Mays falls in the outfield, the A’s commit five errors in another game, A’s owner Charlie Finley tries to fire second baseman Mike Andrews in the middle of the series. It was definitely interesting, if not pretty. Score: 6.

Super Bowl: Dolphins 24, Vikings 7

Should we just skip all these early ‘70s Super Bowls? The Dolphins threw seven passes in this one as Larry Csonka runs for 145 yards. Score: 1.


World Series: A’s over Dodgers in 5

Four one-run games. If you’re getting the idea the early ‘70s featured a lot of low-scoring baseball as well, you are correct. Rollie Fingers wins MVP honors. If a reliever is named MVP, it’s probably been a boring series. Score: 3.

Super Bowl: Steelers 16, Vikings 6

It's 2-0 at halftime, the Vikings have 119 total yards, there are a bunch of turnovers, a blocked punt for a touchdown, and the game is played in wet, icy conditions because it had to be moved from the Superdome to Tulane Stadium because Superdome construction wasn’t completed. Super IX, everyone! Score: 1.


World Series: Reds over Red Sox in 7

Many call this the greatest World Series ever, with good reason: Carlton Fisk’s classic home run in Game 6, the forgotten Game 7 (Reds win in the top of the ninth on Joe Morgan’s single), but the first five games feature plenty of excitement as well. Score: 10.

Super Bowl: Steelers 21, Cowboys 17

This is the famous Lynn Swann game, including his 64-yard TD with 3:02 left that gives the Steelers a 21-10 lead. Score: 7.


World Series: Reds over Yankees in 4

A snoozer, other than the Reds laying claim as one of baseball’s greatest teams with back-to-back triumphs. Score: 2.

Super Bowl: Raiders 32, Vikings 14

The Vikings are banned from future Super Bowls after their fourth stink job in eight years. Score: 2.


World Series: Yankees over Dodgers in 6

Reggie, Reggie, Reggie. Score: 6.

Super Bowl: Cowboys 27, Broncos 10

Well, we can start with the Cowboys fumbling the ball six times. But they lost only two of those. The Broncos, meanwhile, commit eight turnovers. But we had Red Grange conducting the pregame coin toss and a halfback pass for a TD. Score: 2.


World Series: Yankees over Dodgers in 6

Bucky Dent hits .417 with seven RBIs, and rookie Brian Doyle fills in for the injured Willie Randolph and hits .438. Damn Yankees. Score: 4.

Super Bowl: Steelers 35, Cowboys 31

"He's got to be the sickest man in America." Score: 7.


World Series: Pirates over Orioles in 7

Orioles blow 3-1 series lead, score just two runs in the final three games. The worst-looking World Series ever: Garish yellow and orange uniforms, football yard line visible on the chewed-up Memorial Stadium grass. Yuck. Score: 5.

Super Bowl: Steelers 31, Rams 19

The surprising Rams (just 9-7 in the regular season) lead entering the fourth quarter before Terry Bradshaw connects with John Stallworth for the go-ahead 74-yard score. Better than the ’78 game, but less remembered. Score: 8.


World Series: Phillies over Royals in 6

The Phillies win their first World Series. Key game is Game 5 when the Phils score twice off Dan Quisenberry in the ninth to win 4-3. Score: 6.

Super Bowl: Raiders 27, Eagles 10

The Raiders spent all week raising hell in New Orleans and then intercept Ron Jaworski three times. Score: 3.


World Series: Dodgers over Yankees in 6

Yankees win the first two, but Dodgers win next three by one run and then win 9-2 in Game 6. Yankees reliever George Frazier loses three games. Four guys share MVP honors. They couldn't decide on one? Score: 4.

Super Bowl: 49ers 26, Bengals 21

49ers lead 20-0 at halftime, but with the score 20-7 in the third quarter, the Niners stuff Big Pete Johnson on fourth down at the goal line. Game over. The legend of Joe Montana and Bill Walsh begins. Score: 6.


World Series: Cardinals over Brewers in 7

Brewers lead 3-1 in the sixth inning of Game 7, but can’t hold it as Keith Hernandez hits a big two-run single. Do Brewers win if Rollie Fingers isn’t injured? Score: 6.

Super Bowl: Redskins 27, Dolphins 17

Don McNeal, meet John Riggins. Redskins score twice in the fourth quarter to beat a team quarterbacked by David Woodley. Score: 6.


World Series: Orioles over Phillies in 5

I can’t remember one moment from this one. Score: 2.

Super Bowl: Raiders 38, Redskins 9

Joe Theismann, meet Jack Squirek. This was the only AFC victory in a 16-year span. Score: 2.


World Series: Tigers over Padres in 5

The Tigers got off to a 35-5 start and never looked back. Jack Morris tosses two complete-game victories, and Kirk Gibson homers twice in the clincher. Score: 3.

Super Bowl: 49ers 38, Dolphins 16

The much anticipated Montana-Dan Marino showdown fails to materialize as Montana throws for 331 yards and Marino throws two interceptions. Roger Craig scores three TDs. Score: 5.


World Series: Royals over Cardinals in 7

Royals rally from a 3-1 series deficit, with a little help from Don Denkinger and then an embarrassing Cardinals collapse in Game 7, as Whitey Herzog and Joaquin Andujar get ejected and Bret Saberhagen tosses an 11-0 shutout. Score: 7.

Super Bowl: Bears 46, Patriots 10

Impressive in its absolute destruction as the Bears lay claim to being the greatest team of all time (quiet, '72 Dolphins). Score: 5.


World Series: Mets over Red Sox in 7

Game 6 is a classic, maybe the most wrenching defeat in baseball history (since softened, of course, unless you were a Red Sox fan who died before 2004). Game 7 also underrated. Other than a 1-0 duel in the opener between Bruce Hurst and Ron Darling, first five games were duds, however. Score: 8.

Super Bowl: Giants 39, Broncos 20

The Broncos lead 10-9 at halftime before Phil Simms takes over during a 17-point third quarter. He finishes 22 of 25 and then Harry Carson finishes off the game by giving Bill Parcells a Gatorade bath. Score: 4.


World Series: Twins over Cardinals in 7

Twins win all four games in the Metrodome behind some sweet music from Frank Viola. The Cardinals are ravaged by injuries to Jack Clark and Terry Pendleton, leaving a Game 7 lineup that features Jim Lindeman hitting cleanup and Tom Lawless playing third base. Not really a great series, with no one-run games. Score: 5.

Super Bowl: Redskins 42, Broncos 10

Once again, the Broncos hold the early lead, 10-0 after one quarter. Then comes the biggest quarter in Super Bowl history: 35 points, including three touchdowns of 50 yards or more. Doug Williams becomes the first black quarterback to win the Super Bowl. Score: 4.


World Series: Dodgers over A’s in 5

"I can't believe what I just saw." Score: 7.

Super Bowl: 49es 20, Bengals 16

Montana to Jerry Rice (for 215 yards) and then Montana to John Taylor (with 34 seconds left) to cap an 11-play, 92-yard drive. John Candy was impressed. Score: 9.


World Series: A’s over Giants in 4

Maybe the worst World Series ever, with no close games and interrupted by the tragic earthquake. Score: 1.

Super Bowl: 49ers 55, Broncos 10

Montana throws five TD passes, three to Rice, to win his third Super Bowl MVP honors. 49ers outgain the Broncos 461 to 167. They did miss an extra point, however. Score: 1.


World Series: Reds over A’s in 4

Jose Rijo (one run in two starts) and the Nasty Boys bullpen dominate the A’s in a sweep. Score: 2.

Super Bowl: Giants 20, Bills 19

Both teams had gone 13-3, but with Simms injured, the Bills were 7-point favorites. Neither team commits a turnover, Jeff Hostetler plays well, and it comes down to wide right. Score: 10.


World Series: Twins over Braves in 7

The best World Series ever played. Four games decided in the final at-bat. A fifth game decided by one run. Three extra-inning games, including the final two. Kirby Puckett and Jack Morris. Score: 10.

Super Bowl: Redskins 37, Bills 24

Thurman Thomas misses the first two plays because he couldn’t find his helmet. Soon, it's 24-0. Jim Kelly throws four interceptions and the Bills fumble six times. Your Buffalo Bills, everyone! Score: 1.


World Series: Blue Jays over Braves in 6

Series turns on Ed Sprague’s two-run pinch-hit homer off Jeff Reardon to win Game 2. Braves also blow a 2-1 lead in the final two innings in Game 3, and lose Game 6 in 11 innings. Score: 6.

Super Bowl: Cowboys 52, Bills 17

As if five turnovers in the previous Super Bowl weren’t enough, the Bills turn it over nine times -- four more picks, five lost fumbles. At least we had Leon Lett on Don Beebe. Score: 3.


World Series: Blue Jays over Phillies in 6

Besides the Joe Carter home run, this series includes one of the wackiest games in World Series history, a 15-14 Blue Jays victory with 32 combined hits. Yes, Mitch Williams lost that one, too. Score: 8.

Super Bowl: Cowboys 30, Bills 13

At least Kelly didn’t throw four interceptions in this one. Buffalo actually led 13-6 at halftime, but James Washington’s 48-yard fumble return changes the momentum. Score: 3.


World Series: None

Score: A big fat 0.

Super Bowl: 49ers 49, Chargers 26

Steve Young gets the monkey off his back in a big way, with six TD passes. Not exactly a good 15 years for the AFC. Score: 2.


World Series: Braves over Indians in 6

The Indians had one of the most powerful attacks of all time, but hit just .179. Five games decided by one run. Score: 6.

Super Bowl: Cowboys 27, Steelers 17

The Steelers outgain the Cowboys and hold Emmitt Smith to 49 yards, but Neil O’Donnell tosses three crucial interceptions. Score: 5.


World Series: Yankees over Braves in 6

The dynasty begins after the Yankees lose the first two games. Game 4 (Jim Leyritz homers off Mark Wohlers) and Game 5 (Andy Pettitte beats John Smoltz 1-0) are classics. Score: 7.

Super Bowl: Packers 35, Patriots 21

Desmond Howard’s TD kickoff return in the third quarter breaks the game open. Drew Bledsoe’s four INTs don't help. Score: 4.


World Series: Marlins over Indians in 7

Bad series, great finale. Extra credit if you can name the winning pitcher in Game 7. Score: 4.

Super Bowl: Broncos 31, Packers 24

Finally! The AFC wins and John Elway gets his Super Bowl ring. Terrell Davis scores the winning TD with 1:45 when Mike Holmgren tells his team to let the Broncos score. But Brett Favre can’t take advantage of the extra time. Score: 10.


World Series: Yankees over Padres in 4

The Yankees complete one of the greatest seasons ever, 114 wins in the regular season and then 11-2 in the playoffs. The Series has a couple moments -- Tino Martinez’s grand slam and Scott Brosius’ two homers in Game 3 -- but is mostly a dud. Score: 3.

Super Bowl: Broncos 34, Falcons 19

The most memorable play happens the night before when Falcons safety Eugene Robinson -- the NFL Man of the Year -- is arrested for solicitation. Score: 2.


World Series: Yankees over Braves in 4

Roger Clemens wins a ring and brings us all to tears. Score: 2.

Super Bowl: Rams 23, Titans 16

One yard short. A slow start -- three field goals in the first half -- but an exciting finish as Kurt Warner’s rise from Arena League quarterback to Super Bowl MVP is completed. Score: 9.


World Series: Yankees over Mets in 5

Not bad for a five-game series, with the Mets blowing Game 1 in the ninth and losing in 12 innings, plus the Clemens-Piazza fiasco and a good Game 5. Score: 4.

Super Bowl: Ravens 34, Giants 7

Kerry Collins pulls his best AFC quarterback impersonation with four picks. Score: 1.


World Series: Diamondbacks over Yankees in 7

Three of the most memorable World Series games ever. And even Mariano Rivera isn't perfect. Score: 10.

Super Bowl: Patriots 20, Rams 17

The Rams score two TDs in the fourth to tie it up, but Tom Brady drives the Patriots into field goal territory where Adam Vinatieri connects on a 48-yarder. Huge upset for the 14-point underdogs. Score: 10.


World Series: Angels over Giants in 7

Barry Bonds hits .471 with four home runs and 13 walks. It’s not enough as the Angels win their only World Series title. Score: 7.

Super Bowl: Buccaneers 48, Raiders 21

The Bucs return three of Rich Gannon’s five INTs for touchdowns. Score: 2.


World Series: Marlins over Yankees in 6

After two memorable LCS, the Marlins stun the Yankees, topped by Josh Beckett’s five-hit shutout at Yankee Stadium in Game 6. Score: 5.

Super Bowl: Patriots 32, Panthers 29

The game is almost upstaged by Janet Jackson’s halftime performance, but a wild 37-point fourth quarter turns this into a classic. Vinatieri wins it again. Score: 10.


World Series: Red Sox over Cardinals in 4

It’s easy to forget the Red Sox had to beat a 105-win Cardinals team. Series was uneventful, however, as Red Sox even win two games where they make four errors. Score: 5.

Super Bowl: Patriots 24, Eagles 21

Tied 14-14 going into the fourth, Patriots pull away. A late score by the Eagles makes it close. Patriots’ secondary was so beat up Bill Belichick starts a rookie, the team’s fifth defensive back, a practice squad safety and veteran wide receiver Troy Brown. And Donovan McNabb still can't get the job done. Score: 6.


World Series: White Sox over Astros in 4

Can’t rate a sweep too high, but this did feature a walk-off home run from Scott Podsednik, who hadn’t homered in 507 regular-season at-bats, plus a 14-inning Game 3. And history: the White Sox had waited longer than the Red Sox for a title. Just wihtout all the self-indulgent misery of Red Sox fans. Score: 5.

Super Bowl: Steelers 21, Seahawks 10

The Seahawks become the only team to outgain its opponent and commit fewer turnovers and still lose a Super Bowl. Score: 4.


World Series: Cardinals over Tigers in 5

The Kenny Rogers secret substance controversy boosts this one up ... barely. Score: 2.

Super Bowl: Colts 29, Bears 17

A little closer than the final score indicates, as it was 22-17 before Kelvin Hayden’s 56-yard interception return in the fourth quarter. Score: 6.


World Series: Red Sox over Rockies in 4

The Rockies lead for all of three innings. Score: 1.

Super Bowl: Giants 17, Patriots 14

The undefeated, high-powered Patriots go down in dramatic fashion thanks to Eli Manning’s scamble, David Tyree’s helmet catch, and Plaxico Burress’ winning TD. Score: 10.


World Series: Phillies over Rays in 5

My lasting image of this one: the miserable, cold, wet weather. Three games are decided by one run, however. Score: 4.

Super Bowl: Steelers 27, Cardinals 23

Arizona rallies from 20-7 deficit in the fourth quarter to take a 23-20 lead, but Ben Roethlisberger drives the Steelers 78 yards in the final 2:37. And Santonio Holmes gets both toes down. Score: 9.


World Series: Yankees over Phillies in 6

Cliff Lee wins twice, but Hideki Matsui hits .615 and drives in eight runs, including six in the clincher -- just the second player (at the time) to drive in six in a World Series game. Score: 4.

Super Bowl: Saints 31, Colts 17

The Colts lead 17-16 entering the fourth, but the Saints take the lead on a short drive after the Colts miss a 51-yard field goal and then Tracy Porter returns a Peyton Manning interception 74 yards for the clincher. Score: 7.


World Series: Giants over Rangers in 5

Giants win first World Series in San Francisco, outhomering the Rangers 7-3 and holding Texas to a .190 average. But it's the eighth straight World Series that didn’t go seven. Score: 5.

Super Bowl: Packers 31, Steelers 25

Well, the Super Bowl has definitely made amends for all those duds in the ‘70s and the blowouts in the ‘80s and ‘90s. The Steelers never lead, but have a chance to win with 2:07 left, but this time Roethlisberger can't pull out the winning drive. Score: 8.


World Series: Cardinals over Rangers in 7

Game 6 is on the short list of most exciting World Series games -- if not the most exciting -- and Albert Pujols has a three-homer game. Plus we had Bullpengate. But the finale proves anticlimactic. Score: 8.

Super Bowl: Giants 21, Patriots 17

The Giants went 9-7 and were outscored during the regular season, but Eli Manning and company pull off another Super Bowl upset against Brady and Belichick. Once again, Manning directs a winning drive in the closing minutes, with Ahmad Bradshaw scoring with 57 seconds left. Score: 9.


World Series: Giants over Tigers in 4

Boring. And cold. Score: 1.

Super Bowl: Ravens versus 49ers

The final tally: World Series 234, Super Bowl 229, with Sunday's game yet to be played. While most of the early Super Bowls were dull, boring and full of turnovers, the last decade has witnessed many classics. Meanwhile, outside of 2011, the World Series has been devoid of any recent classics. Let's hope that turns around in 2013.