It was nearly too much to take for Los Angeles fans who watched the Boston Red Sox take the series in five games Sunday by winning 5-1, the same score of the Houston Astros' series-clinching win a year earlier.
Los Angeles' hopes that Manny Machado would help deliver the Dodgers' first World Series title since 1988 ended up falling way short.
Miraculously, the native of Lakeland, Florida became just the third player in Major League Baseball history over the age of 35 to have a multi-homer game in the World Series, according to MLBStatoftheDay on Twitter.
Steve Pearce was named the Series' Most Valuable Player after hitting two home runs in the decisive victory. Then, he homered again in the eighth for a critical insurance run.
Mookie Betts and J.D. Martinez added solo home runs in the sixth and seventh, respectively. And when people criticized Boston's bullpen heading into the postseason, they probably had no clue that Cora had an ace up his sleeve.
Palka was 3-for-25 (.120) with one home run during spring training, then hit.286 with 3 home runs in 17 games with Charlotte (AAA) before being called up in late April when Avisaíl García went on the DL with a strained right hamstring. David pitched a great game. And of course, no one could have foreseen Jackie Bradley Jr. winning the ALCS MVP. It's one of the many traits that made him such a great manager in his first season in Boston, and why so many believe even more good times are ahead for the Cora-led Red Sox.
After celebrating with his players Sunday night, which included getting dunked in a giant cooler by first baseman Mitch Moreland, Cora made sure to say how grateful he was of the Boston brass for giving a 42-year-old with just one year of experience one of the most prestigious managerial jobs in all of baseball. "We're world champions. To be able to be open up next season at Fenway Park with the ring ceremony and everything that goes along with it and to drop the banner for the 2018 world champions, that would definitely - I would love that".
Kershaw, who has never lived up to his Cy Young credentials in the postseason, endured another rough outing and gave up four runs on seven hits in seven innings of work.
Boston required just three batters to take a 2-0 lead in the top of the first.
No fan in New England would admit it now - still, chances are some had already started to wonder whether he was the right guy for the Red Sox.
Cora was hired after John Farrell, who led the Red Sox to the 2013 title, was sacked following two straight early exits in the AL playoffs. That's a tribute not just to the pitchers, but the front office as well. "You never know where the game will take you", Pearce told reporters. He occupied one spot in a lineup that the Red Sox outscored 28-16, and which could get nearly nothing going in Game 5, in which everyone who was not David Freese went 1-for-26. So I'm so happy for them because he's got more years here. The Dodgers did well to come on strong down the stretch, win the NL West and beat a tough Brewers club in the NLCS.