The Atlanta Braves:

Before I jump into the World Series match, let me give you some background information on the Atlanta Braves. The Braves had made the World Series in 1991 and ended up losing to the Minnesota Twins in seven games. The very next year also made the World Series, losing to the Toronto Blue Jays in six games. In 1993, they fell short of a World Series, but made it to the NLCS, only to lose to the Philadelphia Phillies in six games. They had a record of 68-46 in 1994, the strike-shortened season. By 1995, it was safe to say that the Atlanta Braves were the team to beat in the NL. They finished the regular season with a 90-54 record. In the NLDS, they beat the Colorado Rockies 3-1 and then swept the Cincinnati Reds in the NLCS. The Atlanta Braves of 1995 had arguably one of the best pitching staffs ever. Take a look at the table below to see Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine, and John Smoltz stats looked like in 1995.


The World Series:

The 1995 World Series would finally answer the age old question of whether or not good pitching always beats good hitting. Game 1 started off great for Kenny Lofton and the Indians, as Lofton lead off the game reaching base on an error, then stealing second and third base. With Lofton on third, Carlos Baerga grounded out, but Lofton scored, giving the Indians an early 1-0 lead. In the bottom of the second Fred McGriff led off the inning with a home run to tie the game at 1, and Greg Maddux proved to be too much for the Tribe, as he held the Indians to 2 runs on 2 hits as the Braves took game 1 by a score of 3-2. Game 2 started off much like game 1, with Eddie Murray giving the Indians an early 2-0 lead, when in the top of the second he mashed a 2 run home run. However the Braves once again were able make a comeback and win the game by a score of 4-3.

Game 3 headed to Cleveland, and turn out to be a game for the ages. The Braves were able to get to Charlie Nagy in the first and take a 1-0 lead, however, it would not last long. In the bottom of the first, Kenny Lofton led off with a single, followed by an Omar Vizquel triple to tie the game; Carlos Baerga then grounded out to first, but Vizquel was able to score to give the Indians the lead. The Indian were then able to chase John Smoltz out of the game in the bottom of the third, when they extended their lead to 4-1. A Fred McGriff home run in the 6th and a Ryan Klesko home run in the 7th brought the Braves within one, but in the bottom of the 7th, Carlos Baerga singled to drive in Kenny Lofton to increase the lead to 2. In the top of the 8th, the Indians pitching imploded and gave up 3 runs, giving the Braves a 6-5 lead. As they had done so many times before, the Indians didn’t go down without a fight. In the bottom of the 8th, Manny Ramirez walked, then Paul Sorrento singled to right field to give the Indians runners at the corners with 1-out and Sandy Alomar stepping up to the plate. He didn’t disappoint either, as hit a double to right field to score Manny and tie the game at 6. The game stayed tied until the bottom of the 11th. Baerga hit a leadoff double, then the Braves chose to intentionally walk Albert Belle. With the game on the line up to the plate stepped Eddie Murray who singled to center to give the Indians their first World Series win since 1948.

In Game 4, the Braves won by a score of 5-2 to take a 3-1 series lead. The Braves pitchers combined to scatter 6 hits over 9 innings. In Game 5, with elimination on the line and Braves Ace Greg Maddux on the hill, it seemed as if the Braves would win. But an Albert Belle 2 run home run in the bottom of the 1st gave a Indians an early lead, and one they would hold the entire game. Jim Thome added some much needed insurance in the bottom of the 8th with a solo home run to give the Indians a 5-2 lead. The Jim Thome home run turned out to be the game winner as in the Top of the 9th, Ryan Klesko hit a 2 run home run to make it a 1 run game, but Jose Mesa was able to close it out and force a game 6 in Atlanta. In game 6, Tom Glavine turned in one of the most dominant pitching performance ever in a World Series, pitching 8 innings of 1 hit baseball and a David Justice home run in the 6th gave the Atlanta Braves a 1-0 win, as the Braves won the World Series, leaving many Cleveland fans to wonder what if the Indians would have won, did we just witness one of the greatest teams ever?

Watch the World Series! (Sorry, I looked everywhere, but couldn’t find game 5)
Game 1:
Game 2:
Game 3:
Game 4:
Game 6:

Tomorrow, Part 3: The Players and Achievements

— Chris Sladoje (@CST_Doje)

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