Saturday, June 23, 2018
Tampa Bay Rays

Mets trying to reverse trend of LCS-sweeping teams losing World Series

Maybe the Mets should have let the Cubs win a few games.

Forget about the Curse of the Billy Goat or the black cat or the Curse of the Bambino. The Mets might be dealing with a sinister force that only rears its malicious head after the League Championship Series:

The Curse of the LCS Sweep.

The Mets, who trail the Royals 2-0 in the World Series heading into tonight's Game 3 in New York, swept Chicago in the NL Championship Series; Kansas City needed six games to oust Toronto in the ALCS.

Advantage, Mets, right? Well, history suggests otherwise.

Since the LCS was expanded to seven games in 1985, eight teams swept those series on their way to the Fall Classic.

Of the previous seven before the Mets, only the 1995 Braves won the title. Three were themselves swept in the World Series (1990 A's, 2007 Rockies, 2012 Tigers). And the Royals, who swept the Orioles in last year's ALCS, lost the World Series to the Giants in seven games.

Cuomo controversy: New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo canceled two $5,500-a-ticket World Series fundraisers after being accused of exploiting the national pastime and civic pride for a chance to raise cash from wealthy insiders.

The Democratic governor's campaign said Thursday that the events scheduled for Games 3 and 4 at Citi Field were nixed and that about 20 "high-end" tickets per game were returned to the Mets.

Cuomo still plans to attend the games. Most fans buying tickets are limited to two per game, according to the team's website.

"The governor should be the fan-in-chief for any New York team up for a championship," said Susan Lerner, executive director of Common Cause. "But when he turns around, takes a special number of tickets and sells them at a premium for his own benefit, he looks terrible, and he's gone from being booster-in-chief to self-serving politician."

Park it: Welcome to the World Series, Citi Field. Opened in 2009, the modern, $800 million ballpark built on nostalgia for New York baseball will become the 56th stadium to host a Fall Classic, STATS said. Celebrity Mets fans Jerry Seinfeld, Chris Rock and Jimmy Kimmel might well be among the 45,000-plus who pack the brick and wrought-iron facility.

Piano fan: A spokesman for singer Billy Joel told Newsday that the "Piano Man" will sing the national anthem before tonight's game. The Mets have a long history with Joel. This season, they played his hit Piano Man as a sing-along in the middle of the eighth inning and sometimes play New York State of Mind after victories at Citi Field. Last week Joel, 66 — who was born in the Bronx, the home of Yankee Stadium — sang Meet the Mets and gave score updates from Game 4 of the NLCS during a concert at Madison Square Garden.

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