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The Worst MLB Teams to Make The World Series

Now that the Arizona Diamondbacks have secured their spot in the World Series (and on our list), we thought it would be time to take a look at some of the teams with the worst MLB regular season records to make the World Series.

Here are the six teams with the lowest win percentages in the regular season that have made surprising runs to the World Series:

  1. 1973 New York Mets (82-79): Despite their mediocre regular-season record, the Mets made it to the World Series. Key players included:
    • Tom Seaver: The Hall of Fame pitcher had a strong year, winning 19 games with a 2.08 ERA.
    • Tug McGraw: The reliever popularized the phrase “Ya Gotta Believe!” and was instrumental in their postseason run. The Mets lost the World Series to the Oakland Athletics in seven games.
  2. 2006 St. Louis Cardinals (83-78): A subpar regular-season performance was overshadowed by their postseason dominance.
    • Albert Pujols: The slugger hit .331 with 49 HRs and 137 RBIs.
    • Chris Carpenter: The ace of the staff anchored the rotation and was crucial in their playoff success. They clinched the World Series in five games against the Detroit Tigers.
  3. 2023 Arizona Diamondbacks (84-78): A middle-of-the-pack club that fizzled heading into the playoffs caught fire at the right time.
    • Corbin Carroll: A 22-year-old rookie who led the team in triples (10), steals (54) and slugging (.506).
    • Zac Gallen: The staff workhorse won 17 games in 2023, just a year after leading the league in WHIP (.913) and H/9 (5.9).
  4. 1987 Minnesota Twins (85-77): The Metrodome was buzzing as the Twins capped off a magical season.
    • Kirby Puckett: The center fielder was a leader on and off the field, contributing with a .332 batting average.
    • Frank Viola: “Sweet Music” was the series MVP, leading the pitching staff. They bested the St. Louis Cardinals in a seven-game World Series.
  5. 2000 New York Yankees (87-74): In the midst of their dynasty, this year’s team wasn’t the strongest on paper but still delivered.
    • Derek Jeter: The future Hall of Famer batted .339 and was the World Series MVP.
    • Mariano Rivera: The closer was nearly unhittable in the postseason, recording saves with a minuscule ERA. The Yankees triumphed in the “Subway Series” against the New York Mets.
  6. 2014 Kansas City Royals (89-73): Entering as a Wild Card, the Royals were the Cinderella story of the postseason.
    • Lorenzo Cain: He was stellar on defense and offense, proving to be a spark for the team.
    • Wade Davis: As a relief pitcher, he posted a 1.00 ERA during the regular season and was even more dominant in the playoffs. However, the Royals came up just short, losing in seven games to the San Francisco Giants.

Baseball’s postseason can be unpredictable. While regular-season performance provides some indications, it’s the key players and timely moments that often determine who advances to the World Series.

Listicled Staff
Listicled Staff
Listicled staff covers everything from sports to entertainment, politics to parenting, and everything in-between.

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