This Day In Dodgers History: 1955 World Series Win, NLDS Sweep Against Cubs & Clayton Kershaw Reaches 300 Strikeouts

On Oct. 4, 1955, the Brooklyn Dodgers defeated the New York Yankees, 2-0, in Game 7 of the World Series to win the first championship in franchise history. It was the only World Series won in Brooklyn before the Los Angeles Dodgers captured a title in 1959.

Hall of Famer Gil Hodges knocked in the two runs with a two-out single in the fourth inning and sacrifice fly in the sixth. Johnny Podres pitched a complete game shutout for the Dodgers despite giving up eight hits and two walks.

In the previous seasons, the Dodgers had failed to beat the Yankees in the World Series quite often, which led to fans creating the “wait ’till next year,” chant with the belief that they would one day they would win.

The Yankees defeated the Dodgers in the 1941, 1947, 1949, 1952 and 1953 World Series until the Dodgers finally picked up the win in 1955. After winning, fans edited their chant to “this is next year,” but it was short-lived as the Yankees defeated the Dodgers in the 1956 World Series.

Dodgers sweep Cubs in NLDS

Also on this day but in 2008, the Dodgers defeated the Chicago Cubs, 3-1, to complete a National League Division Series sweep that ended a run of postseason failures.

From their World Series win in 1988 to 2008, the Dodgers only made the playoffs four times, and they lost each series they appeared in. They failed to make the playoffs the other 14 seasons, which meant the club went 18 seasons without winning a postseason series.

The Dodgers went on to play the Philadelphia Phillies in the NL Championship Series but fell short of advancing to the World Series, getting eliminated in five games. The Phillies then defeated the Tampa Bay Rays in the World Series.

While the Dodgers didn’t end up winning another World Series until the 2020 season, 2008 provided some hope for the future, and beginning in 2013, the club began their run of 10 consecutive playoff appearances.

Clayton Kershaw reaches 300 strikeouts

On Oct. 4, 2015, Clayton Kershaw struck out seven San Diego Padres hitters over 3.2 scoreless innings to reach the 300-strikeout mark for the first, and only, time in his career.

Kershaw finished the season with a 2.13 ERA, 1.99 FIP and 0.88 WHIP while striking out 301 hitters and walking 42 in 232.2 innings. Kershaw led the league in innings, strikeouts, FIP, complete games (four) and shutouts (three) that season, but he finished third in Cy Young voting behind Chicago Cubs pitcher Jake Arrietta and Dodgers teammate Zack Greinke.

It was also one of three seasons he led the league in strikeouts along with his 2011 (248) and 2013 (232) seasons. In 2022, Kershaw became the Dodgers franchise strikeout leader with 2,697, passing Don Sutton, who finished with 2,696 over 16 seasons.

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