Kansas City Royals: The World Series Journey

Kansas City Royals: The World Series Journey

Kansas City Royals

For the first time in 30 years, the Kansas City Royals are World Series champs. After losing last year’s Fall Classic in heartbreaking fashion to the San Francisco Giants, Kansas City finished things off this time around. With young, talented hitters like Lorenzo Cain and Alcides Escobar, as well as the ideal mix of experience and youth on the pitching staff, this could be a title contender for years to come. As K.C. celebrates, let’s look back at its championship run.

Regular Season

After last year’s huge improvement, the Royals proved they were no fluke with a dominant 2015 regular season. Finishing 95-67 and easily winning the AL Central, the squad rode clutch hitting throughout the year from bats like Cain and Kendrys Morales, and a deep rotation featuring the likes of Edinson Volquez and Yordano Ventura, to the number one seed in the AL playoffs.

ALDS

Baseball’s 2014 Cinderella story faced off against 2015’s in the epic ALDS matchup between the Royals and Astros. Down two games to one, Kansas City’s bats came alive in Games Four and Five, when it tallied 16 runs combined and left little doubt about who was the favorite in the American League.

ALCS

To get to the World Series, Kansas City had to defeat the daunting hitters in the middle of the Toronto Blue Jays order. After taking the first two games behind solid pitching, the Blue Jays’ bats came alive in Game Three, which they won 11-8. But K.C. responded with its own dominant offensive performance, taking Game Four, 14-2. Toronto wouldn’t go down without a fight, taking Game Five, but the Royals used some late-game heroics to advance in six.

World Series

And just like that, Kansas City was back in the World Series for the second year in a row. But standing in its way was a formidable New York Mets squad, led by a dominant pitching staff. Aces Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, and Matt Harvey had been mowing down NL offenses and presented a major challenge. But just like they did all year, the Royals found a way. Showing true resiliency and grit, they won the series in five games, despite having to come from behind on all four of their victories. Catcher Salvador Pérez, who hit .364 during the series, was named World Series MVP.

Whether you’re a die-hard Royals fan or just want to celebrate their historic title, get the latest team fan gear here at eastbay.com.

MLB: A Sign of Things to Come for Strasburg

MLB: A Sign of Things to Come for Strasburg

words_Nick Engvall

As a pitcher, the low scoring close games are the ones that break you. Stephen Strasburg will have to get used to tough losses, like Wednesday’s 1-0 loss to the Kansas City Royals if he is going to be the All Star that many expect him to be in the future. It’s not Strasburg’s performance that will be in question in games like these, but rather the offensive output of his own team that may leave him feeling a bit frustrated.Stephen Strasburg

While Strasburg did give up 9 hits (all singles), just one less than he had in his first three starts combined. He also wrote his name next to another stat in the record book. Strasburg’s 9 strikeouts brings his total through the first four starts of his career to 41, more than any other pitcher in baseball history. Strasburg had already recorded the most strikeouts over his first three starts with a total of 32. However, the Washington Nationals offense was nowhere to be found and Strasburg, while only giving up one run and lowering his ERA to an impressive 1.78, received the first loss of his career.

The right-hander recorded another first that might usually go unnoticed. Strasburg singled in the third inning to record his first hit in the major leagues.

While the Nationals are struggling as a team over the last 9 games, losing 7, Strasburg is still a standout. With up-and-coming catcher, Bryce Harper now in the Nationals’ system it will just be a matter of time before Washington gets a solid offense to ensure that the one-run losses are held to a minimum. Strasburg will just need to be patient, and continue mowing through opponent’s lineups with his near triple-digit fastball, on his way to a great career. At 2-1 with 41 strikeouts and an ERA at 1.78 and dropping, he is already off to an incredible start.

image via yahoo