Kansas City - A World Series billed as dynasty versus destiny lived up to the hype
as the San Francisco Giants joined classic championship clubs by
spoiling a fairy-tale run for Kansas City.
The Giants captured their third crown in five seasons with a 3-2
victory over the Royals in Wednesday's deciding game of Major League
Baseball's best-of-seven final, becoming the first team to win so many
titles in so short a span since the New York Yankees took four from 1996
San Francisco added to a trophy haul that includes 2010 and 2012 and
the only other National League champion with so many World Series crowns
in so short a span was the St. Louis Cardinals, who won in 1942, 1944
"I'm numb really through all of this," Giants manager Bruce Bochy
said. "You are so fortunate to get into the World Series and to get one.
It just doesn't happen that often.
"To look at this and see we won three times, I'm amazed at what these
guys did. It's not easy. But when you have a group of warriors like we
have, they continue to amaze you. They were relentless."
For the Royals, who had not even reached the playoffs in 29 years
since claiming their only World Series crown in 1985, the heartache was
palpable after they started the playoffs with a record eight-game win
streak entering the World Series.
"It's a tough pill to swallow," Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer said.
Down to their last strike, Alex Gordon hit a single that Giants
centerfielder Gregor Blanco misplayed and allowed to roll to the wall,
allowing Gordon to reach third base. With the tying run a tantalizing 90
feet from home plate, Salvador Perez hit a pop fly for the final out.
"It hurts to come as close as we came in a one-run game and as
magical as our run has been to end up losing the ballgame by 90 feet is
tough," Royals manager Ned Yost said.
"But the hard part about this is that you work all year to climb to
the top of the mountain and then boom, you fall back and you have got to
start right back at the bottom again next year."
Yet the Royals impressed every rival with a young and talented squad
that defied expectations and ended the title dreams of favored teams
like the Los Angeles Angels and Baltimore Orioles.
"We have gained a ton of experience," Yost said. "I don't think I've
ever been as proud of anything in my life as I have been of this team
and the way they performed this post-season. It was just fantastic.
"For them to play on the stage the way they did this post-season was
just phenomenal. As optimistic as I am, it was even more than I
expected. They left everything on the field and it was an honor and a
privilege to be their manager."
And this year's sorrow can become next year's motivation.
"They are still very hungry," Yost said. "It's a very dejected group.
They didn't accomplish their goal. They know how close it came and they
are going to want to taste it again."