The Curse Of Sports Illustrated

Not sure when Sports Illustrated is going to learn their covers are more bad luck than good luck in most sports, especially the MLB. 

This year in baseball has been one of the most emotional, dramatic, and head turning in a while. With the Los Angeles Dodgers and Houston Astros heading to the World Series, we can’t help but wonder if the Sports Illustrated cover the Dodgers appeared on will have an effect on them.

SI Curse MLB
Sports Illustrated

First, here is a little history of what has happened over the years after people, or teams, have appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated.


We have seen this curse since 1954. One of the first occurrences was when the Braves third baseman, Eddie Mathews appeared on the cover. Later breaking his hand and their 9-game winning streak. He was out for 7 games after the injury.

In 1968, a “mysterious” pitcher appears on the cover. In the article, the California Angels pitcher Jack Hamilton is mentioned because of his pitching tactics. Less than a month later, Hamilton threw a pitch, shattering the face and left eye socket of a Red Sox outfielder. The trauma from the incident left Hamilton with fear in his heart, or I should say arm, which lead to him losing the pitch he was known for. Ironically enough, the article was written about a spitball, which is essentially an illegal move wetting up the ball. This turns the pitch to move unexpectedly. Hamilton was accused of this later on by many, including his own teammates.

Sports Illustrated cover
Sports Illustrated

From then on we saw more and more occurrences of this curse.

In 1978 when Royals, Clint Hurdle went from potential rookie of the year, batting.304 to losing all his pizzaz and ending the season with a .259.

1987 had two teams jinxed. The Indians star players, Joe Carter and Cory Snyder, appeared on the cover describing the team as the best team in the American league. They later lost 101 games. The Blue Jays also showed on the cover later that year, just in time for the postseason. Losing 7 games and blowing their lead for a position in the American League East. They were eliminated a day before the cover was to be released.

1988: Red Sox appeared, later giving them 4 wins in 30 games and sweeping them out of the ALCS.

1988: Dodgers appear on the cover just after their most recent World Series Victory. Their pitcher, Orel Hershiser, was featured because of an outstanding number of awards. Hershiser later tore his labrum on his pitching arm.

Much more occurred between then and now, but let’s fast forward a bit.


We finally made it to the 2017 World Series. Where the Houston Astros will fight for their state after the horrific incidents of Hurricane Harvey, and the Los Angeles Dodgers will battle on, keeping hope in the hearts of those affected by the many wildfires. Both teams want this, both teams need this, and both teams have been affected by the Sports Illustrated curse in the past.

In August of this year after the Los Angeles Dodgers appeared on the cover, naming them the “Best Team. Ever?”, the Dodgers then went on to win only 1 game out of 15. Although they still made it to the final round with minor injuries, it still could have an effect.

Flashback a few years, in 2014, Sports Illustrated predicted that the Astros would not only play but WIN the 2017 World Series.

So will the Astros be defeated by the 2014 article and lose to the Dodgers? Or will the Dodgers be shut down by the cover from August?

Tune in this week when the games begin! The schedule for the games can be found here.

astro and dodger covers
Sports Illustrated


Learn more about the Sports Illustrated Jinx here.

Disclaimer: We love you Sports Illustrated, but we also love our teams.