Starting in late May, when the Boston Red Sox recovered from their early season struggles to tie the New York Yankees for first in the AL East, the conclusion to the 2011 Major League Baseball season seemed inevitable: the Sox and Yanks would finish 1-2 in the East, one claiming the division crown, the other the wild card, and they'd then meet in the ALCS for the right to play the Philadelphia Phillies and their 4-headed pitching juggernaut in the World Series.

Then a few funny things happened on the way to the Great Northeast Corridor Hype Series of 2011. The Sox started chugging beers and eating chicken in the clubhouse and didn't make it out of September, and both the Yankees and Phills got bounced in the Division Series. Now we've got something resembling Bud Selig's worst nightmare: a Fall Classic played entirely in the central time zone (one that doesn't feature the Cubs, to boot). Still, for baseball fans both casual and rabid, the Texas-St. Louis matchup actually has the makings of a fascinating World Series: two of the biggest stars in the game, some "complex" managers, and games that could really get out of hand fast. Read on for 5 Reasons This Will Be the Best World Series in Years... 

Tags: mlb, world-series
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