Kansas City Royals are your 2015 World Champions!

November 2nd, 2015 by Ryan Waterman | Filed under Baseball, General, MLB.

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The 7+ month journey to the Commissioner’s Trophy is officially over, and after a little more than five games (after factoring in the extra innings), the Kansas City Royals are your 2015 World Champions of Baseball! The Royals accomplished this fact, by knocking off the rather surprising NL pennant winning Mets in five games.

Starting things off with the Royals, they dominated their way to the playoffs.  Finishing 95-67, Kansas City rolled to the top seed in the American League and the fourth best record in baseball (behind the Cubs, Cards, and Pirates).   Behind the arms of their pitching staff, the power of their bats, and the speed of the baserunners, the Royals gritted their way through a pair of grueling series in the ALDS against the Houston Astros (5 Games) and the Toronto Blue Jays (6 games).

In the meanwhile, the Mets took a different road.  Following a emotion-fueled five game thriller with the Dodgers, New York plowed right through the upstart Chicago Cubs in route to their first WS appearance since the 2000 “Subway Series” against the Yankees.   Behind their four studs, and the “Ageless Wonder” Bartolo Colon, the Mets finished 90-72, shocking the baseball world by beating out the Washington Nationals for the NL East Crown.  While both teams took different paths, they had one thing in mind…..a collision course with the trophy in sight.

Things got off to an incredibly epic start in game one, as the Royals overcame a 4-3 defecit in the bottom of the 9th inning to draw “first blood” with a 5-4 thriller in 14 innings.  The momentum carried over from there, as they took game 2 by a convincing 7-1 margin, behind the arm of ace Johnny Cueto.   The Mets got back on track with a 9-3 thrashing of KC in front of the New York faithful on Friday night, setting up a pivotal game 4 on Saturday.  In a game that the Mets needed desperately, Daniel Murphy’s eighth-inning error, allowed Ben Zobrist to reach home from second, spearheading a 3-run rally, leading to an eventual 5-3 win.  That victory set the stage for a game 5 for the ages, last night.   

The Mets seemingly came in with the “Caged Animal” theory in their favor.   You can only push an animal so far into a cage, before it starts to fight back.   Well, the Mets started their fight back last night, by sending the “Dark Knight” Matt Harvey out to the mound.   And boy, they chose a great night to send him out.   Harvey allowed only seven baserunners, on four hits through his first eight innings.  In the process, he struck out eight.   Things took a turn for the weird though, as the eighth inning came to a close.   

After the home half of the eighth inning, Matt Harvey was ready to head back out to the mound.   However, manager Terry Collins and the pitching coach decided between themselves that Harvey’s night was finished.  Unfortunately for them, Harvey wasn’t going to just leave.  He managed to talk Collins into leaving him in the game, with the chance to close out his 2-0 gem that he’s put together.  Biggest mistake ever!

The ninth inning started with Harvey walking Royals center fielder Lorenzo Cain.   In the following at-bat, Cain would steal second base, before being brought home by an Eric Hosmer RBI double.  This cut the KC deficit to 1 run.  It was at that point, that Jeurys Familia was brought into relieve Harvey.   Having already blown two saves this series, there was seemingly no way he could blow three.   

Familia took the mound with a man on second and no outs.  He was able to get Mike Moustakas to ground into a fielder’s choice, advancing Eric Hosmer to third.   With a man on third and one out, the tension began to grow.   Salvador Perez stepped up to the plate, and grounded out to third.   This seemingly set up a 5-3-2 double play, ensuring a game 6 on Tuesday night in Kansas City.   Everything went according to plan, as David Wright fielded the ground out, winging it at first baseman Lucas Duda.  Duda made the turn to throw home, ending the game.  However, his throw sailed up and over the shoulder of Travis D’Arnaud, allowing Eric Hosmer to cross home-plate, scoring the tying run.   With this game heading to extras, Mets fans began to worry….

The 10th and 11th innings went smoothly, as no team came dangerously close to scoring the decisive run.   Finally, we reached the 12th inning.  Leading off was Paulo Orlando, who reached base on a single.  The Royals then brought on Jarrod Dyson as a pinch runner, signalizing their desire to close it out.  During Alex Gordon’s at bat, Dyson made a break for and stole second base putting the winning run, 90 feet away from home plate with no outs.  Gordon then grounded into a fielder’s choice, advancing Dyson to third base with one out.  From there, rookie Christian Colon drove home the winning run, setting the scene for a 5 run top of the 12th inning, and clinching Kansas City their first World Championship since 1985.   

We here at TalkSportsPhilly would like to congratulate both the Kansas City Royals, and their front office staff, for their amazing accomplishment.   An amazing job well done, by an amazing team!   

Editor’s Note: The Royals came damn close to winning the Fall Classic last year, but ran into the Madison Bumgarner buzzsaw.  They were out to make damn sure that they brought it home this year.  This team had it all.    Oozing talent from top to bottom, the squad was tenacious, and carried around a “Never Say Die” attitude. The performance that we all witnessed tonight, is the performance of a championship team, and I can honestly say that no team deserves it more so than the Kansas City Royals.   Congratulations guys!


 

With the baseball season finally coming to a close, there is no rest for the weary as MLB Free Agency begins on Friday, November 6th.   I strongly encourage the readers of TSP to keep their eyes peeled this week for an upcoming preview of the Phillies Free Agency plans.   Until then, I’ll see ya when I see ya…..

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