Congratulations to the 11 MLB teams that entered play on Monday with at least a 25 percent chance of making the playoffs, but only five of them are actually contenders to win the 2013 World Series.

Not all World Series champions are created equal, but recent winners have a handful of things in common that suggest a possible formula for identifying the true candidates to win it all.

If you’re a fan of one of the teams identified as a pretender, feel free to convince yourself that the criteria lain out on the next slide are purely coincidental, and that your team is destined to break those trends.

While you’re doing that, the rest of us will be taking a look at why Yadier Molina and the St. Louis Cardinals might be the favorites to win their third World Series championship in a span of eight years.


*Unless otherwise cited, all statistics on the following slides are courtesy of and and are accurate through the start of play on Monday, September 23.

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