The Los Angeles Dodgers winning the franchise’s first World Series since 1988 featured several memorable moments throughout the postseason from the likes of Cody Bellinger, Mookie Betts, Walker Buehler, Clayton Kershaw and Justin Turner, among others.
The Dodgers breezed through the newly-added Wild Card round and followed that by sweeping the San Diego Padres in an at-times competitive National League Division Series. Then L.A. encountered a world of trouble as they fell behind 3-1 to the Atlanta Braves in the NL Championship Series.
It took a collective effort to avoid elimination, and for Turner that included breaking from tradition. During the latest episode of the “Holding Kourt” podcast, Turner explained the two different pant styles that are part of the Dodgers’ uniform and recalled how he switched to high socks during the NLCS:
“The short pants are the ones that come up to your knee; and then you wear the high blue socks. Jackie Robinson style. … They’re two separate pants. We have pants that are literally cut short; as long as they go is to your knee. And then we have our long pants that go down to your cleats. … They’re both ready at all times, but Spring Training is always a decision because we mainly play day games.
“During the season, for the most part, rule of thumb is pants up on day games, pants down on night games. In the playoffs last year, I didn’t have a good first couple series against the Brewers and Padres, and I started wearing my pants up against the Braves and started hitting again. So I wore my pants up the rest of the playoffs. Those obviously weren’t day games, those were night games. I kind of broke my own rule, but you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do.
“I could not sniff a hit. I just didn’t feel right those first two series. I got a couple hits and had a couple RBIs against the Padres, got 0-fer against the Brewers. Against the Braves, I started feeling good again and then I really felt good in the World Series. The pants were up. That was it. I was going pants up. … If my pants aren’t up maybe I don’t tag Dansby.”
Turner wore full-length pants in each of the first two NLCS games before making the switch. He was a combined 2-for-9 with two strikeouts in those games, both of which were Dodgers losses. Turner then went 5-for-16 with two doubles, one home run, one RBI and three walks over the next five NLCS games.
He carried that momentum into the World Series, going 8-for-18 with four doubles, two home runs, two RBI and one walk through the first four games against the Tampa Bay Rays. Turner previously highlighted finding a better rhythm at the plate as the postseason wore on.
“I’ve been grinding away, working away with our hitting guys, trying to get good feels,” he explained after Game 3 against the Rays. “Finally felt a little better tonight and was able to put together five good at-bats.”
Turner adds to Dodgers record books
As he was searching for the right feeling at the plate, Turner continued to add to his franchise records. He is the Dodgers’ all-time postseason leader in games played (72), hits (79), home runs (12), RBI (40) and total bases (135).
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