It has been 29 years in the making, but the Kansas City Royals are finally back in the Fall Classic. A team that features a strong defense, lockdown bullpen, and timely hitting overcame a four-run deficit in the 8th inning of the wildcard game to even be in this position. They won that game in 12 innings and have not lost since then. It is an even year, so the Giants are predictably still playing baseball into late-october. They won the world series in 2010, 2012, and now are on the brink of doing so in 2014. After an 86-loss 2013 season, the Giants responded by maintaining the same core of players for another run. That decision has paid off for Bruce Bochy and the Giants.
Here we are, all set for first pitch on Tuesday at 8:07. But first, 3 of the ISH MLB lead staff writers give their answers to the million-dollar question: Giants or Royals?
Brian Duricy (@uniform_unicorn) –
Sure, the Royals haven’t lost a game in the postseason. And why not throw in there that they swept the Giants during their lone meeting in 2014? Royals fans and bandwagoners alike, however, will snap out of their idyllic reverie at these two magic words: Colorado Rockies.
In 2007, the Rockies smoothly shot through the National League Playoffs in order to reach the World Series, a team the Royals have remained reminiscent of throughout October. Ramming into the Boston Red Sox, a team of superior talent and postseason experience, the Rockies were quickly dismissed. This entire prediction has been about the Rockies because history sometimes does repeat itself. The James Shields that thrust Tampa Bay into the World Series is no longer – he’s been banged up this postseason, and unless the Royals can capture that first game, the Giants will do Major League Baseball little good as they sweep the inexperienced upstarts.
Giants in 4
Josh Eastern (@jeastern3) –
The 2014 Fall Classic is sure going to be an exciting one. The Royals, who come in undefeated in the Postseason, face off against a very good Giants team. At the beginning of the year if you had told me that these two teams would be in the World Series against each other, I would have called you crazy. Both teams feature very good pitching staffs. The Royals have a much-acclaimed bullpen while the Giants have one of the best pitchers baseball has to offer in Madison Bumgarner.
The key matchup to watch in this series is Buster Posey vs. the Royals base stealers. We all know they can run, but can they beat Posey? One big advantage the Royals have is their defense in the outfield. That could be a big difference in the big outfield of AT&T Park. The Giants may not always score in the prettiest ways, but they always seem to hang around in the game and get that one key run at the pivotal point in the game. The Royals, on the other hand, can mash the ball around the yard and they use the long ball to their advantage. I fall for that “even years’ theory and that is why I pick the Giants to win in 6.
Giants in 6
Max Marcovitch (@MMarcovitch10) –
The Kansas City Royals are in the World Series. I have to say that again to even comprehend that astounding revelation. The only question left for this magical run: are they the 2007 Rockies or the 2013 Red Sox. Does their stout defense and lockdown bullpen lead them to a “team of destiny-like” glory or do they fall to a superior, higher-payroll team? The Giants, meanwhile, have the best pitcher in the series (Madison Bumgarner might be the second best southpaw in baseball), the best offensive player in the series (Buster Posey is the best catcher in baseball), but I still am going to ride the Royals fever.
Something special has been brewing in Kansas City ever since they fell behind to Oakland in the wild card game. James Shields proves once-and-for-all that GM Dayton Moore made the right call in swapping Wil Myers for him and Mike Moustakas hits a couple more home runs; the Royals they take the world series. Regardless of how it turns out, what an amazing October this has been for a loyal fanbase that has waited years for its turn in the spotlight.
Royals in 7