MLB

MLB roundtable: Which team will be next to snap a lengthy World Series drought?

The abbreviated 2020 MLB season is complete and the Los Angeles Dodgers are World Series champions. They defeated the Tampa Bay Rays in six games to clinch their first title since 1988. Now that the offseason is underway, here are the important dates you need to know for the winter.

Throughout the offseason my fellow CBS Sports MLB scribes and I will bring you a weekly roundtable breaking down, well, pretty much anything. The latest news, a historical question, thoughts about the future of baseball, all sorts of stuff. Last week we looked at potential Francisco Lindor landing spots. This week we’re going to tackle teams looking to end long World Series droughts.

Which team will be next to end a long World Series drought?

R.J. Anderson: The Padres and the Mets are going to be popular responses. I’m going to mix up things for the sake of intrigue by going with the Reds. It’s been 30 years since they’ve won a championship, but they have a good roster and I suspect they’ll do what they can this winter to ensure their next playoff stay will be a little longer. With the Cubs and Brewers seemingly on the way down and the Pirates already at the bottom, Cincy should have a chance to run the division the next few years, giving them ample opportunity to make a legit title run.

Katherine Acquavella: I’ll go with the Padres. From the outset, this could seem like a premature pick considering the club reached the playoffs in 2020 for the first time in 14 years. But San Diego’s core — made up of Fernando Tatis Jr., Manny Machado, Eric Hosmer, Wil Myers — is not only talented, they’re also determined. Plus with their impressive farm system, they’re built to contend for several years to come. With Mike Clevinger set to pitch alongside Dinelson Lamet and Chris Paddack in 2022, that gives their rotation a strong 1-2-3, and that’s not even including top prospects MacKenzie Gore or Luis Patino. The Padres have the foundation in place for a winning formula and San Diego will just keep inching closer to their drought-breaking World Series title each year.

Matt Snyder: I’ll go with the Mets. There’s a decent enough foundation in place and now with Steve Cohen looking to make a huge splash in the middle of a period when nearly every other team is pinching pennies, they are in the perfect position to take advantage of the unique circumstances. Maybe they do something like sign J.T. Realmuto, George Springer and Trevor Bauer or something, but I think they are going to continue making noise well past this one offseason. They’ll be a powerhouse soon. 

Dayn Perry: I have to say Padres, too. They’ve got a deeply impressive young talent base and a bold front office, they’ve shown a willingness to spend on veteran free agents, and it’s also an attractive destination for free agents. Sharing a division with the Dodgers isn’t optimal, but with the playoffs likely to expand permanently the Padres figure to get a lot of cracks and going the distance over the next several years.

Mike Axisa: The Mets or Padres are probably the correct answer, so, for the sake of variety, I’ll go with the Athletics. They haven’t won a World Series since 1989, the year Game 3 was rocked by the Loma Prieta earthquake, but their championship window is currently wide open. They have the fourth-most wins in baseball over the last two seasons, they have two stars on the infield (Matt Chapman and Matt Olson), and they always seem to unearth quality pitching (Chris Bassitt!). The A’s have to figure out their middle infield this winter, but the AL West is very winnable now that the Astros are trending down. Just get into the postseason and you can win the World Series, and I think the Athletics have a clearer path to the postseason than the Mets (very tough division) and Padres (stuck in the same division as the Dodgers) in the short-term.

Here are the 11 teams with a World Series drought of at least 30 seasons …

Cleveland

72 years (last won in 1948)

Rangers

60 years (never won, first year was 1961)

Brewers, Padres

52 years (never won, first year for both was 1969)

Mariners

44 years (never won, first year was 1977)

Pirates

41 years (last won in 1979)

Orioles

37 years (last won in 1983)

Tigers

36 years (last won in 1984)

Mets

34 years (last won in 1986)

Athletics

31 years (last won in 1989)

Reds

30 years (last won in 1990)



 

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