The baseball community at large has done its best to devalue the Los Angeles Dodgers' 2020 World Series title because of the shortened 60-game season, in addition to the limited number of fans in the stands (at a neutral site) for the championship series and World Series.
Dodgers fans let others whine about it all they wanted, because just like any other unfavorable/bizarre scenario that so many other teams are faced with on an annual basis, LA overcame everything and got the job done.
If any other fanbase captured that title, they would've clung to it and told us to "cry more" because we couldn't take advantage of the situation presented to us. You know Fandom Disease works. It's no secret, especially as social media has exacerbated the worst kinds of behaviors.
But ... BUT ... now, more than ever, it's starting to feel like there's validity behind calling the Dodgers' World Series a "Mickey Mouse Championship." And the lone reason is because this team constantly fails after typically dominating a 162-game marathon season.
The Dodgers have made the playoffs ever year since 2013. They've made the World Series three times. Their only title was 2020. There's been exponentially more heartbreak than there's been success. The disappointments will always outweigh the triumphs, but this imbalance is becoming more and more alarming by the year.
Dodgers list of escalating playoff failures are starting to invalidate 2020 World Series
The "Wild Card" Dodgers' 106-win team in 2021 was dispatched by a low-tier Braves squad that rallied after adding a variety of middling pieces-turned-superheroes at the deadline. The historic 111-win team was bounced by a Wild Card team. The unexpected 100-win 2023 team was swept by an 84-win Wild Card team. The Dodgers' best players are consistently disappearing, and no answers for the lack of fire when the postseason arrives.
Could it be the front office letting so many clutch players leave in recent years? Was it the obsession with seemingly planning for Shohei Ohtani's eventual arrival? Could it be the incorrect assortment of star players? Mookie Betts historically isn't a playoff performer, and Freddie Freeman only played in 14 October games before the 2020 season. Will Smith's playoff numbers are nauseating. Clayton Kershaw is sadly unable to put his postseason demons in the rearview.
So, yeah, it would make total sense the lone time since 1988 the Dodgers would succeed came in 2020, when there were no fans in the stands, deescalated expectations because it was a free-for-all, and a much easier opportunity to cruise through the playoffs because guys weren't exhausted after six full months of baseball.
The clubhouse has changed multiple times, but for the most part, the Dodgers have faltered in similar fashion. In recent years, locker room distractions perhaps derailed their runs, or, at the very least, affected morale. Even the front office has served as a bit of an obstacle, cutting off communication with valuable players like Joc Pederson and Justin Turner, sending a harsh message that nobody is safe from their cutthroat ways. Whatever it is, something is wrong, and it's a much more glaring trend that overshadows the 2020 title.
See, you either die a hero or live long enough to see yourself become the villain.