In the most bizarre development of the Baseball World Heavyweight Championship season, the Dodgers failed to appear for their title defense against the San Francisco Giants at AT&T Park. Their entrance music played three times, but the champs never emerged from behind the curtain. So, by virtue of a forfeit, the Giants become (sigh) the new Baseball World Heavyweight Champion.
Now, there's no possible way the Dodgers would fail to show up voluntarily, so something sinister must have happened. Maybe they were run over by a limo. Maybe they were kidnapped. We may never know. Hopefully, someone will locate them soon, so we can get some answers.
So, congratulations, Giants! We just need to send our man Steve to pick up the belt and deliver it to you. Should be just a moment...
For those of you just joining us, here's how the Baseball World Heavyweight Title works:
The BWHT imagines the World Series Championship as a pro wrestling belt defended in regular season series. The defending World Series champions start the season with the belt. From there:
1. A team must win a series from the champion to take the belt. One game isn't going to cut it, considering it's a 162-game season and teams all view the season in terms of series.
2. If the belt-holder splits a series (two- or four-game series), it retains. Much like on a draw in boxing or a count-out situation in pro wrestling, you don't get the belt unless you actually beat the champion. A tie isn't good enough.
3. If, at the end of the regular season, the belt-holder does not make the playoffs -- and due to the dynamics of this thing, that scenario is entirely plausible -- said team will be stripped of the title for not qualifying for the postseason. Then the winner of the playoffs -- the World Series -- takes the belt and the title into the offseason.
Let's take a look at the title history to date, as the Giants begin their second reign...
First up for the new champs will be the Rockies, who are getting their FOURTH shot at the belt this season. Can Dinger and company make the Giants' reign brief, or will they be labeled the Lex Luger of the BWHT? (Tons of title shots, but can never win the big one.)
And fear not, Dodger fans, because this is still a Dodgers blog and not a (OH MY GOD WHY DON'T YOU START A) Giants blog, we will periodically update you on the Dodgers' best chances to regain the title. At the moment, best we can tell, we should hope the Rockies win the belt and then retain until June 1st. I know we're all disappointed, but the real goal is to be the team standing tall with the strap at the end of the season.
*Upon researching the path of the title in 2014, I learned that the Giants actually won the belt on the final day of the season and successfully defended it through the postseason. Gross. Their initial 2015 title reign length still remains 6 days, however.