2022 MLB postseason recap

The Houston Astros won the 2022 World Series at home on Saturday, Nov. 5, beating the Philadelphia Phillies four games to two in a best-of-seven series. This is the Astros’ second World Series title in the period of six years, collecting four American League pennants and six consecutive trips to the League Championship Series in the process.
“I love the Astros,” said Elle Carpenter, ’25. “They’re a great team and deserved the win.”
A Texas resident, Carpenter loves the Astros not only because they’re a successful team, but the increased pride they bring to the area.
“I like the Astros because of the community they provide in Houston,” Carpenter said. “It’s really sweet.”
Leading up to the World Series, there were many exciting playoff matchups for baseball fans. The Cleveland Guardians and the New York Yankees had an incredible face-off in the American League Divisional Series.
Losing the series 3-2, the Guardians were the youngest team in the MLB. With 17 rookies making their Major League debut this season, the Guardians were not supposed to make the playoffs. They then went on to win the American League Central and earned a best-of-three home playoff series against the Tampa Bay Rays, preceding the five game set with the Yankees.
“I loved following their postseason and seeing how well they did,” said baseball enthusiast Peyton Bender, ’26.
A Cleveland native, Bender said she is always happy when her teams get far in the season.
“It’s always surprising when the Guardians do well,” Bender said. “Any of the Cleveland teams for that matter. We aren’t really a winning city so it’s exciting to be recognized again for sporting accomplishments. Maybe they can make it all the way next year.”
The Seattle Mariners also had a successful season, making it to the playoffs for the first time in 21 years — the longest playoff drought in MLB history. However, the team is still climbing towards their first World Series appearance, as they are the only club yet to appear in one after joining the Major Leagues as an expansion team in 1977.
The Astros’ road to success this season has been taken with disgust by some fans after the infamous cheating scandal in 2017 that resulted in Houston’s previous World Series title. That year, the team used a video camera in center field to record the opposing catcher’s signals to the pitcher for the following pitch. Once the code was cracked, they would alert the batters via banging on trash cans so the hitter would know what was being thrown to them.
This resulted in the most severe punishments the MLB has issued against a team. The Astros were required to pay $5 million and forfeit first- and second-place draft picks for the 2020 and 2021 seasons. Some fans believe this punishment was too light, and will still argue the 2017 World Series title should be revoked.
To this day, fans at the ballpark continuously boo the Astros and disapprove of their success.
“Regardless of the scandal, I love the Astros and I’m proud with how the team did this season,” Carpenter said.
Entering as underdogs in the series, Interim Manager Rob Thomson of the Phillies took over and guided the 87-win team through the postseason, competing against three other National League teams that had 101 or more wins along the way. This put them at a severe disadvantage, contributing to the shock of fans when they made it to the World Series.
It was their first time returning to the World Series since 2008, when the star-filled roster of Cole Hamels, Ryan Howard, Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley and others took down the Tampa Bay Rays 4-1.
The success of the Astros can largely be attributed to Justin Verlander. The veteran pitcher, who just finished his 18th season in the big leagues, gave the Astros an unbelievable regular season, boasting a 1.75 ERA as well as earning two wins in the postseason.
Verlander is one of 19 pitchers in baseball’s 3,000 strikeout club and has pitched in four previous World Series games. He was named MVP of the World Series and was honored with a Golden Glove Award for the American League.
The Astros are already considered to be the favorites for the 2023 season, according to stats from MLB reporters. The long, 144-day offseason has already begun, with March 30, 2023 set as opening day.