As the MLB calendar turns to August there are just two more months before we find out which teams will battle in the postseason. And while betting on MLB playoffs can be the most exciting part of the season, it is the rivalries that keep us coming back for more. With that in mind, PointSpreads.com explores the top five MLB rivalries.
5. Chicago Cubs vs Chicago White Sox
While these Windy City entries reside in different leagues, the rivalry comes alive on those occasions when the Cubs and White Sox throw down, as it did when the Cubs’ Michael Barrett punched White Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski at the plate back in 2006.
— NBC Sports Chicago (@NBCSChicago) May 20, 2019
These two ancient rivals have been vying for the affections of Illinois residents for over 100 years, whether it is in the friendly confines of the Cubs’ Wrigley Field or on the south side of town at the Guaranteed Rate Field the White Sox call home. The MLB scheduling gods have been annually programming two series between these two intrastate rivals every year since 1999.
Here you go buddy lol just have to look harder lol pic.twitter.com/LadLr1sP8D
— Rene Fierro (@fierrorene83) July 27, 2023
Although they have only met once in the postseason, the 1906 World Series in which the White Sox emerged victorious, it’s always special whenever these two Chicago adversaries play ball against each other. This year the Cubs swept both games in the White Sox sandbox but the two will meet again on August 15th and 16th at Wrigley and PointSpreads.com will be covering every pitch.
4. New York Yankees vs New York Mets
The East Coast version of the annual Windy City Showdown can be seen in the Subway Series featuring the Yankees and Mets. And, while this may be a relatively young rivalry, with these teams meeting for the first time on June 16th, 1997, there have been many last memories including the 2000 World Series when the two Big Apple entries met, with the Bronx Bombers winning the series 4-1 for their third consecutive championship crown.
On this day in 2000, the Yankees defeated the Mets to win their third straight World Series title. pic.twitter.com/bbiQDwE4yy
— YES Network (@YESNetwork) October 26, 2018
And during that series, how can we forget when Roger Clemens threw Mike Piazza’s broken bat at him while he was running down the first base line? It caused the benches to empty but nothing more than words were exchanged. The two teams split their annual series this season, each winning two games apiece.
— TodayInSports (@TodayInSportsCo) October 22, 2021
3. Los Angeles Dodgers vs San Diego Padres
The very best rivalries develop when both teams are relatively even, but such has not been the case in recent memory between these two West Coast editions. The Dodgers have ruled the NL West over the last 10 years, winning nine division titles during that time, while the Padres haven’t captured the crown since 2006, when they won a tiebreaker with the Dodgers due to their head-to-head records.
And although Big Blue has dominated the division we should point out that the Padres ousted them from the postseason last year, when they defeated the Dodgers in the best-of-five NL Division Series, 3-1, to advance to the NLCS.
— New York Sports Games (@NYSportsGames12) October 21, 2020
2. Chicago Cubs vs St. Louis Cardinals
Although the Cubs and White Sox vie for Windy City supremacy every year, they don’t see a whole lot of each other, as they are in opposite leagues. However, one of the greatest standing rivalries in baseball history is between the Cubs and their division rival, the St. Louis Cardinals.
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) July 30, 2023
These bitter enemies have played each other almost 2500 times over the years and this season we saw the Cubs win eight of their 13 contests with the Redbirds. But one of the most prolific seasons the world of baseball has ever witnessed came about in 1998 when the Cubs’ Sammy Sosa and the Cardinals’ Mark McGuire were crushing baseballs with regularity.
And one of that season’s most profound moments came when Sosa hit his 62nd home run of the season, surpassing Roger Maris’ long-standing record.
1. Boston Red Sox vs New York Yankees
The Red Sox/Yankees series reigns supreme and is often referred to as the fiercest rivalry in all of sports. While the odds to win 2023 World Series for both teams have risen substantially since the beginning of the season, both teams are still in contention for the playoffs.
However, the Red Sox have dominated their New York rivals this season, winning five of their six games thus far, with seven more games on the docket in August and September.
There will be many more memories to be made in this ancient East Coast showdown but one of the fondest in Red Sox lore occurred on July 24th, 2004 when Boston catcher and team captain, Jason Varitek, shoved his glove in Alex Rodriguez’s face.