Ranking Five of the Astros’ All-Time Greatest Rivals
4. Los Angeles Dodgers
Before I talk about present day, let’s talk about the history between the two clubs. They both played in the National League West from 1969-1994, with the Dodgers winning the Division seven times, compared to Astros’ lone division titles in 1980 and 1986.
During that 1980 run, the Dodgers and the Astros were neck-and-neck all summer long. They wound up in a tie, forcing a game 163 to see would take home the Division, with the Astros winning and advancing to their first postseason appearance in franchise history.
In 1981, due to a strike, it was determined that the first half division winner would play the second half division winner in a best of five series. The two squads again faced off, with the Dodgers taking the series in five, after the Astros blew a 2-0 lead.
The two clubs would not see each other in the postseason again until 2017, when the Astros beat Los Angeles in seven games. Two years later, when the sign stealing scandal came out, is when this rivalry really got its footing.
Many Dodgers players publicly expressed their gripe with the Astros, claiming that the 2017 World Series is illegitimate, and that the Dodgers should be the true Champions.
Cody Bellinger also stated that Altuve stole the 2017 MVP award from Aaron Judge, and that the Astros had been cheating for three years (which was false).
This sparked fires in the Astros locker room, witch led to Carlos Correa’s interview with Ken Rosenthal during 2020 Spring Training. He ripped Cody Bellinger, explaining why he believes the Championship and Altuve’s MVP to be legitimate.
He also suggested that Cody Bellinger needs to work on his reading comprehension, as the Astros had not been cheating for three years.
Things escalated during the shortened 2020 season, when the two clubs faced off in front of no fans.
Joe Kelly, who was a member of the 2018 Red Sox (who were also proven cheaters), controversially threw at Alex Bregman, and mocked Correa after a strikeout, which almost led to a benches clearing brawl.
The Dodgers would go on to win the 2020 World Series. To say the least, these teams do not like each other, and this is a rivalry that could go on for years.