After their 4-2 loss to the Boston Red Sox in Game 2 of the World Series on Wednesday night, the Dodgers quickly tried to turn their attention to Game 3 in Los Angeles.
"Historically, it’s not a good thing losing the first two," said infielder David Freese, "but if we can pick up Game 3, things can change."
That one-game-at-a-time refrain sounds nice, but it belies the historically steep odds that the Dodgers face at 0-2.
According to MLB research, 43 of the 54 teams that have been up 2-0 in the World Series, like this year's Red Sox, have gone on to win it, including each of the past 10.
And when home-field advantage is taken into account, the odds get even better for Boston — 31 of the past 38 teams that have won the first two games at home have gone on to become World Series champions, including each of the past 15, according to MLB research.
In fact, the last time a team lost the first two games of a World Series on the road and came back to win was 1981, when the Dodgers rallied to beat the Yankees.
Here are the other teams in World Series history that returned home down 0-2 and won.
1978 Yankees: After dropping the first two games at Dodger Stadium, the Yankees won four in a row to claim the title, including a 10-inning, 4-3 win in Game 4 that flipped the momentum; New York went on to outscore the Dodgers 19-4 in the series' final two games.
1971 Pirates: After getting shellacked by the Baltimore Orioles, 11-3, in Game 2, Roberto Clemente and company returned home, won three in a row and slipped past the Orioles in Game 7 to win the series.
1965 Dodgers: This was the Sandy Koufax series. The Dodgers lost the first two games in Minnesota against the Twins but fought back to tie the series before Koufax took over, spinning shutouts in both Games 5 and 7 to clinch it for Los Angeles.
1958 Yankees: New York not only fell into an 0-2 hole against the Milwaukee Brewers in this series, it also found itself trailing 3-1 after dropping Game 4. But the Yankees, whose lineup featured Yogi Berra and Mickey Mantle, recovered and won.
1956 Yankees: The Yankees lost the first two games of this series on the road against the Brooklyn Dodgers but won the series in seven. Interestingly, the last three games were all shutouts, including a 9-0 rout in the decisive game.
1955 Dodgers: Same teams, different story. This time it was the Brooklyn Dodgers losing the first two games on the road and bouncing back to win in seven.
Dodgers rookie Walker Buehler will pitch in Game 3 on Friday against Rick Porcello.
Contributing: Gabe Lacques
Contact Tom Schad at [email protected] or on Twitter @Tom_Schad.
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