The New York Mets making the World Series after 15 years ends a drought that might seem long, but there are 12 teams who have been waiting much longer to make their return, while two others have never even been to it.
Never Been There – Seattle Mariners, Washington Nationals
The Mariners are one of the newer MLB franchises, making their debut in 1977. Since then they’ve been to the postseason four times (all coming from 1995-2001). They’ve been to the ALCS four times, losing once to the Cleveland Indians and twice to the New York Yankees, even after their 116-win season in 2001.
The Nationals were actually the Montreal Expos from 1969 to 2004. The Expos had only one postseason appearance (1981). They’ve made it twice since moving to Washington, but 1981 remains the only time they’ve won a playoff series, then losing in the NLCS to the Los Angeles Dodgers. It’s worth mentioning that in 1994, the strike season, they had a 74-40 record before it ended.
Atlanta Braves, 16 years
The 90’s were a great time to be alive for Braves fans, making the World Series five times from 1991 to 1999. After getting swept by the New York Yankees in ’99, the party began to simmer down. In the 16 seasons that have passed, they’ve made the NLCS only once, and after a streak of 14 consecutive postseason appearances, they’ve been to the playoffs just three times since 2006.
San Diego Padres, 17 years
Since their inaugural MLB season in 1969, the Padres have been to the World Series twice. In 1984 they lost to the Detroit Tigers and in 1998 to the New York Yankees. Aside from back to back NLDS losses to the Cardinals in 2005 and 2006, they haven’t even made the postseason since getting swept by the Yankees in ’98.
Cleveland Indians, 18 years
The last championship the city of Cleveland has experienced came in 1948. Since then the Indians have been to the World Series three times: In 1954, and then a long wait for the late 90’s, when they made the World Series twice. Losing to the Braves in 1995 and then to the Marlins in 1997, a loss that was remarkable in many ways. Since then they’ve made the playoffs six times (if you include the Wild Card game playoffs), and were quite close in 2007, taking the eventual champions Red Sox to 7 games in the ALCS.
Toronto Blue Jays, 22 years
The Blue Jays are currently trying to hold on in the ALCS, their first playoff appearance since those happy days of the early 1990’s, when the young franchise won back to back championships against the Atlanta Braves and Philadelphia Phillies, before a long, dark period lasting over two decades took over.
Minnesota Twins, 24 years
The franchise began its days as the Washington Senators (1901-1960), winning one world series. In Minnesota, the Twins tasted ultimate success much later, winning the World Series in 1987 and 1991. Since then it’s been pretty bleak, with six postseason appearances (last one in 2010), winning a series just once, back in 2002.
Oakland Athletics, 25 years
One of the most successful franchises in baseball history, with nine World Series titles in Oakland and Philadelphia (1901-1954). The A’s made the World Series three years in a row (1988-1990) winning in 1989. Since their 0-4 loss to the Reds in the 1990 World Series, they’ve been to the playoffs quite a few times, but only once (2006) have they actually won a series before getting beat up by the Detroit Tigers in the ALCS.
Cincinnati Reds, 25 years
It was quite a shock when the Reds beat the A’s in four games to win the 1990 World Series, a fifth for the franchise. They’ve made the postseason only four times since then, winning just one series in 1995, although got swept on their way out that year by the eventual champions Atlanta Braves.
Los Angeles Dodgers, 27 years
No matter how much money the Dodgers spend, they can’t seem to find their way back to the World Series. Since winning it in 1988 against the A’s, Dodgers fans have been through nine playoff disappointments, including three times getting bumped in the NLCS, twice by the Phillies.
Baltimore Orioles, 32 years
The Orioles have been to the World series 10 times, winning it three. The last time that happened was in 1983, beating the Phillies in five games. It took them 13 years to get back to the playoffs, and then losing twice in a row in the ALCS. In 2014 they made the ALCS again, but were swept by the Kansas City Royals.
Milwaukee Brewers, 33 years
One World Series visit, one loss, in 1982 to the St. Louis Cardinals. That was followed by 26 years of missing the playoffs. Their last visit to the postseason was in 2011, making the NLCS but losing to the Cardinals.
Pittsburgh Pirates, 36 years
The Pirate have been to the World Series seven times, winning it five. That last visit was in 1979, beating the Baltimore Orioles in 7 games. They haven’t won a playoff series since, making the wild card game three years in a row (2013-2015) and only once making it into the NLDS, which they lost to their division rivals, the St. Louis Cardinals.
Chicago Cubs, 70 years
When the Cubs made the World Series in 1945, it was their 10th time. They lost to the Detroit Tigers in seven games, and so the curse of Billy the goat. Since then they’ve been to the playoffs only 7 times, winning just two series. In 2015 it seemed like things were going great, just like the movie said they would, but they got swept in the NLCS by the Mets. The future does look bright, but things change quickly in Baseball.