The 2006 World Series, the 102nd edition of Major League Baseball’s championship series, began on October 21 and ended on October 27. It matched the American League champions Detroit Tigers against the National Leaguechampions St. Louis Cardinals. The Cardinals won the Series in five games, taking Games one, three, four, and five. This was the third Series meeting between the Tigers and the Cardinals, the first in 38 years. The Cardinals won the first in 1934, and the Tigers won the 2nd in 1968; each went the full seven games. The 1968 World Series was the last before divisional play and an extra round of playoffs began.
It was only the fifth time in 40 years that the Series featured two teams that had both remained in the same city since the formation of the American League in 1901, the last time being the 2004 World Series between St. Louis and the Boston Red Sox. The last three prior to 2004 were in 1975 (Boston–Cincinnati), 1968 (Detroit–St. Louis) and 1967(Boston–St. Louis).
The Cardinals, who moved into Busch Stadium in April, became the fourth team to win the Series in their home stadium’s debut season, joining the 1909 Pittsburg Pirates (Forbes Field), 1912 Boston Red Sox (Fenway Park) and 1923New York Yankees (Yankee Stadium (I)). In 2009, they would be joined by the 2009 New York Yankees (Yankee Stadium). St. Louis also won their 10th Fall Classic, the most of any National League franchise, and second to only the Yankees’ 27 (then 26) titles, and their first since 1982. Cardinals manager Tony La Russa, who won the 1989 World Seriestitle with the Athletics, became the second manager in history to lead teams in both leagues to championships, joining Sparky Anderson. Tigers manager Jim Leyland, who won the 1997 World Series title with the Marlins, also could have become the second manager in history to lead teams in both leagues to championships, had the Tigers won the series.
The Cardinals finished the regular season 83–78. This is the second-worst record ever for a league champion (the 1973 New York Mets finished 82–79) and the worst record ever for a World Series champion. Previously the 1987 Minnesota Twins finished 85–77 and defeated the Cardinals in the 1987 World Series.
Ceremonial First Pitches: Game 1: Al Kaline and Willie Horton; Game 2: Sparky Anderson and Alan Trammell; Game 3: Ozzie Smith; Game 4: Lou Brock; Game 5: Stan Musial