World Series

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The World Series has been the annual championship series of the highest level of professional baseball in the United States and Canada since 1903, concluding the postseason of Major League Baseball. Since the Series takes place in October, sportswriters many years ago dubbed the event the Fall Classic; it is also sometimes known as the October Classic or simply The Series. It is played between the League Championship Series winning clubs from MLB's two circuits, the American and National Leagues. The World Series has been played every year since 1903 with the exception of 1904 (boycott) and 1994 (player strike). Though professional baseball has employed various championship formulas since the 1860s, the term "World Series" is usually understood to refer exclusively to the modern World Series.

In spite of its name, the World Series is contested solely between Major League Baseball's American and National Leagues. The post-season series between the AL and NL was originally called the "Championship of the World" or "World's Championship Series" (from 1884). The 1890 Spalding Guide expressed an intent to expand the championship to the entire world,[1] following the 1888–89 world tour organized by Albert Spalding, owner of the Chicago White Stockings.[2] Over time, the event's name was shortened to "World's Series" and then "World Series."[1] Contrary to popular legend, the name of the series is not related to the New York World newspaper.[1][3]

The winner of the World Series championship is determined through a best-of-seven playoff except for 1903, 1919, 1920, and 1921, when the winner was determined through a best-of-nine playoff. The winning team is awarded the Commissioner's Trophy and the team presents its players and executives individual World Series championship rings. The Series-winning club also receives a larger proportion of the gate receipts from the series.

The New York Yankees of the American League have played in 40 of the 106 World Series and have won 27 World Series championships, more than any other Major League franchise. From the National League, the San Francisco Giants (formerly New York Giants) and the Los Angeles Dodgers (formerly Brooklyn Dodgers) have appeared in 18 World Series championships. The Giants were invited to the World Series 19 times, but boycotted the event in 1904. The St. Louis Cardinals have represented the National League 17 times and have won 10 championships, which is the second most of any Major League Team.[4] Presently, the Chicago Cubs have played the most seasons without winning the World Series, with their last championship coming in 1908.[5]

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