Pomrenke: The final pitch of the season

From SABR member Jacob Pomrenke at The National Pastime Museum on October 16, 2014:

When Matt Carpenter of the St. Louis Cardinals struck out against Boston Red Sox closer Koji Uehara to end the 2013 World Series, it marked the 19th time that a Fall Classic ended on a strikeout—by far, the most common ending to a World Series.

A strikeout has ended six of the last eight World Series since 2006, which should come as no surprise to anyone who has noticed baseball’s climbing K-rate in recent years. Only one of those six Series-ending strikeouts was a called strike three: San Francisco Giants closer Sergio Romo’s daring 89 mph fastball over the heart of the plate against American League MVP and Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera of the Detroit Tigers—in the 10th inning of a one-run game, no less—to clinch Game 4 of the 2012 World Series. It was the first time in more than eight decades that a World Series ended on a called strikeout.

A baseball game can end in any number of different ways, from a foul popup to a strikeout to a game-winning home run; World Series have ended in all of these ways. But the ending of the World Series signifies something more to most baseball fans: a championship for one lucky team, of course, but also the end of a grueling seven-month campaign and the start of the long, cold winter (a.k.a. the offseason). The final pitch of the World Series is always a memorable one.

Read the full article here: http://www.thenationalpastimemuseum.com/article/final-pitch-season-glory-and-goats

Originally published: October 16, 2014. Last Updated: October 16, 2014.