Find out which single season ranks as the greatest of all time for your favorite MLB team.
Fresh off the first World Series title in franchise history, it’s pretty obvious that 2017 will be a year remembered forever by fans of the Houston Astros. Everything went exactly according to plan in the multi-year rebuild for the Astros, and they rewarded their fans with a title. No sports fan in the city of Houston will ever forget rallying together around their baseball team full of exciting, dynamic, young superstars.
But what about the rest of the league?
Every team — even the ones that have never won the World Series — has at least one historically great season. Some are more obvious than others — the 2004 Boston Red Sox and 2016 Chicago Cubs ending their respective curses, come to mind. Then, there are other teams where you have to dig a little deeper to find a season worth remembering.
The thing about baseball history that makes it so special is the ways in which fans connect with their favorite teams and can remember minute details from almost all 162 games. If that sounds like you, you’re sure to enjoy this look back through the most iconic seasons for all 30 MLB franchises.
Arizona Diamondbacks: 2001
Led by the dynamic duo of Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling, the 2001 Arizona Diamondbacks became the fastest expansion team to win a World Series. In just their fourth season in existence, the Diamondbacks defeated the New York Yankees 4-3 in an all-time classic World Series that ended on a walk-off in Game 7 against Mariano Rivera.
By the time their fourth season rolled around, the Diamondbacks were already established as a contender thanks to the presence of Johnson and Schilling. They won 100 games in 1999, just their second season since joining the league. In 2001, both Johnson and Schilling were at the height of their powers, combining to go 43-12 with 665 strikeouts in only 506.1 innings. Arizona was actually a sub-.500 team in the games not started by their pair of aces.
Schilling and Johnson covered for the rest of the Diamondbacks rotation, which was abysmal. A solid offense that finished fourth across the board in the National League triple slash by hitting .267/.341/.442 with 818 runs and 208 home runs also buoyed the snakes. The 2001 season was the year of a lifetime for outfielder Luis Gonzalez who hit .325/.429/.688 with 57 home runs and 142 RBI.
Veterans like Mark Grace, Matt Williams, Reggie Sanders and Steve Finley also pitched in on offense. These Diamondbacks certainly weren’t the best team in the league, but they had the two best pitchers in their prime. That allowed them to slice through the National League and then take down the Yankees as Gonzalez plated Jay Bell for the game-winning run. This is still the only World Series title for the Diamondbacks.