Skip To Content

Support the Forward

Funded by readers like you DonateSubscribe
The Schmooze

Here Are The Jews Who Are Playing In The 2018 World Series

Shalom, self-haters, anti-Semites, and non-believers! It’s that time of year once again, when we at the Schmooze remind you that Jews aren’t as bad at sports as you believe.

The 2018 Major League Baseball World Series begin Tuesday at 8:09 pm for some reason, and you’d better believe we have tracked down all two Jews who will be playing America’s favorite game. And also, we are here to say that for a group that makes up 2% of the country’s population, two out of fifty ain’t bad — it actually puts us at 4%. (That’s math, folks! Just another one of our strong suits.) Last year our people hit it out of the park, so this year our expectations are stratospheric.

Let’s meet the boys.


For the Los Angeles Dodgers, 26-year-old centerfielder Joc Pederson is returning to defend his title as reigning Jewish World Series Participant. His team lost last year, but it hardly matters since his sports star has continued to be on the rise, and since, just as importantly, his Jewish lineage is a real home run as far as genealogical inquiry goes. Pederson, proof you should never judge a person’s Judaism by his name, is an American Jew by way of 19th century Jewish immigrants. His great-great-great-grandfather and great-great-great-uncle were charter members of the historic synagogue Temple Emanuel in San Francisco, so you know he’s owed a favor upstairs. And it doesn’t hurt that he’s on Koufax’s team. Last year at this time he was hitting the Series’ first grand slam.

We’ll miss Reform hottie Alex Bregman. But let’s meet his successor, over at the Boston Red Sox: Ian Kinsler.


Second baseman Ian Kinsler is a bit of a Cinderella story, or whatever the baseball equivalent is. (Probably also Cinderella! Cinderella is so universal!) He was the 496th draft out of college, but has spent years spinning cowhide into gold on the Texas Rangers, Detroit Tigers, and Los Angeles Angels. He is a sports prince, born to a Jewish ball-player-slash-prison-warden (must have been a relaxing childhood) and a Catholic mother. When he joined the Tigers, Hank Greenberg’s team, he started exploring his Jewish identity. What can we say? At 36 years old, he’s still a tough-talking, mustachioed mensch who’s considered one of the greatest Jewish baseball players of all time. He’s a tough hamentaschen.

With any luck, both Pederson and Kinsler are practicing right now with one thought only in their hearts: baseball is a very nice game. But the thing that really matters is making the Jewish people proud, and that they have both already done.

Jenny Singer is the deputy lifestyle editor for the Forward. You can reach her at [email protected] or on Twitter @jeanvaljenny





    Hybrid: Online and at the Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan

    Oct 2, 2022

    6:30 pm ET · 

    A Sukkah, IMKHA, created by artist Tobi Kahn, for the Marlene Meyerson JCC of Manhattan is an installation consisting of 13 interrelated sculpted painted wooden panels, constituting a single work of art. Join for a panel discussion with Rabbi Joanna Samuels, Chief Executive Director of the Marlene Meyerson JCC of Manhattan, Talya Zax, Innovation Editor of the Forward, and Tobi Kahn, Artist. Moderated by Mattie Kahn.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.