ST LOUIS, MO: Lance Berkman #12 of the St. Louis Cardinals hits a game-tying RBI single to score Jon Jay #19 in the 10th inning during Game Six of the MLB World Series against the Texas Rangers at Busch Stadium in St Louis, Missouri. The Cardinals won 10-9 in 11 innings. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
As if the Cardinals didn't already have momentum going for them, and the home field in Game 7 of the 2011 World Series, there's also this:
I'm not sure why that made Justice throw up in his mouth, except I think he was covering the Orioles as a beat writer in the late 1970s for The Washington Post.
But are road teams at a real disadvantage in Games 7, generally?
I checked. What's happened since 1979 is anomalous. There have been 35 winner-take-all contests in the history of best-of-seven World Series, and home teams are 18-17. There has been absolutely zero advantage.
Now, you might think that something fundamental about Games 7 has changed since 1979 and you might be right ... but then you sort of need to come up with what that might actually be. And I can't really think of anything.
I think it's just a statistical fluke. Home teams won eight straight from 1982 through 2002. Visiting teams won nine of eleven from 1952 through 1968.
What's also anomalous is that we've not seen a Game 7 since 2002. That's easily the longest gap in World Series history. There weren't any winner-take-all Games 7 between 1912 and 1924, but the World Series was best-of-nine from 1919 through 1921; only the '21 Series would have gone the distance in a best-of-seven series.