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MLB: Biggest Rivalries in Baseball

There are some memorable rivalries in Major League Baseball and we have taken a look at the biggest and best the organisation has to offer.

Boston Red Sox versus New York Yankees

This rivalry is probably the most-famous and well-known of the rivalries in baseball.

They play each other in the American League East Division every season and this infamous feud goes back to 1919 when Red Sox owner Harry Frazee, in the midst of huge financial troubles, sold star player Babe Ruth, arguably the greatest ever player in baseball, to the Yankees for $125,000.

The decision was widely considered a bad move by Red Sox fans and it later became the subject for the “Curse of the Bambino”, an 86-year-old championship drought that directly followed Ruth’s trade to the Yankees.

Red Sox fans believed that Ruth had cursed their team to never win a World Series again, while the Yankees flourished for decades after the trade, winning 27 World Series championships and signing Hall-of-Fame standard players at regular intervals.

The Red Sox did reach the championship many times but not until 2004 did they break the frustrating curse, although despite this, both sides continue to treat each other as the arch-enemy on the east coast.

It makes for intriguing battles such as the AL Wild Card game in 2021 when the Red Sox knocked out the Yankees from the playoffs in a one-off game. Also, the Red Sox have won the World Series more recently in 2019 much to the chagrin of the Yankees support.

The Yankees are 8/1 to win the World Series in 2023, while the Red Sox are 30/1.

Los Angeles Dodgers versus San Francisco Giants

The Dodgers-Giants is perhaps the oldest rivalry in Major League Baseball. Los Angeles and San Francisco have a rivalry that stretches back to 1889 when they faced each other in the World Series at a time when both teams hailed from New York.

The Brooklyn Dodgers and the New York Giants were two of three teams in the big apple with the Yankees to add to that. The Giants and Dodgers eventually moved to the West Coast and California in 1958 and their rivalry continued.

Among the most famous moments came in 2004, when the Dodgers were two games ahead in the Division with two left to play.

In the decisive game in the series, the Dodgers were on the verge of losing their lead with a 3-0 deficit in the ninth inning, still they managed a huge comeback, including a walk-off grand slam by Steve Finley to win the game and the National League West Division.

The Dodgers are 11/2 to win the World Series in 2023, while following the Giants purchase of Carlos Corea, their odds have dropped slightly to 28/1 to triumph in the Fall Classic

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Chicago Cubs versus Chicago White Sox

This city rivalry has such a vibrant and large community to help support them it seems inevitable that the two sets of fans would clash.

Both teams are in separate divisions though, the Cubs play in the National League Central, while the White Sox are in the American League Central, so it is possible for the two to play each other in the World Series.

These two sides do face each other in inter-league games during the season either at Wrigley Field (Northside of Chicago) or at Guaranteed Rate Field (Southside of Chicago).

The Cubs won the 2016 World Series against Cleveland breaking a 108-year drought in the Fall Classic.

St Louis Cardinals versus Chicago Cubs

Although the Cubs facing their city-rivals is one thing, their inter-division rivalry with the St.Louis Cardinals also catches the eye.

Cubs fans regard St.Louis as their biggest enemies and the rivalry has existed for 130 years.

The rivalry is centred around geography as the city of St Louis, Missouri is located right on the border of Illinois. Many fans in Illinois are fans of the Cardinals rather than their state team the Cubs (or even the White Sox for that matter) causing much annoyance for the Cubs support.

A more recent battle between these two sides came in 2019 when the Cardinals defeated the Cubs to advance to the playoffs with a four-game streak, their first four-game winning streak against the Cubs since 1921.

These two sides will play in the London Series over two games in 2023, taking their rivalry to Europe.

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