The Tigers haven't won the World Series since 1984, which was so long ago that the clincher was a day game and the traditional wisdom of what wins in October was in full force. That Detroit team won 104 regular-season games, including 19 by ace Jack Morris, who started (and won) three of their eight postseason games. The Tigers went 7--1 in October while hitting .245.
Since then the postseason has been expanded three times: The LCS was stretched to best-of-seven in 1985, the Division Series round was added in 1995, and now the wild-card knockout games. More postseason games have been played since 2000 than in the first 65 years after the World Series began. A grueling four-week season after the season begins this weekend, taxing pitching staffs and bringing offenses to the fore like never before.
And then there's the biggest change from 1984: how rarely the ball is put into play. Baseball is played with 40% more strikeouts per game today than it was back then. Never before has strike three been more common. Avoiding it might just be the key to October.