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Never Say Never; Royals Take the 2015 World Series trophy in 5 Games

By Anthony Pugliese

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The 2015 baseball season came down to one last series between the National League Champion New York Mets (90-72) and the American League Champion Kansas City Royals (95-67). The 111th World Series started off with a bang. Kansas City hosted game one that saw Mets ace Matt Harvey take the hill against Edinson Volquez for the Royals. The Royals started early when leadoff hitter Alcides Escobar hit a deep fly ball to left center field that Yoenis Cespedes misjudged and wound up kicking causing Escobar to touch them all on the first Mets pitch of the game. The Mets would answer in the 4th inning when catcher Travis d’Arnaud hit an infield single that scored NLCS M.V.P. Daniel Murphy. In the top of the 5th inning, Curtis Granderson would hit a line drive homerun over the right field wall to break the 1-1 tie. Rookie Michael Conforto hit a sacrifice fly in the 6th inning to increase the Mets lead to 3-1. The Royals would tie the game in the bottom half of the 6th, before an Eric Hosmer error scored Juan Lagaras. With their star closer on the mound, the Mets were poised to take game one when Alex Gordon hit a homerun to tie the game in the bottom of the 9th.  It would take 14 innings before game 1 would be decided by a Hosmer sacrifice fly scoring Escobar. Chris Young took the game 1 win and Bartolo Colon took the loss.

Game two put Jacob deGrom on the mound opposite Johnny Cueto. The story in game 2 was all about Cueto as he was dominant. The Mets did get on the score board first after a Lucas Duda bloop single in the 4th. After that it was all Royals. Alcides Escobar, Eric Hosmer, and Mike Moustakas all had RBI singles in the bottom half of the 5th inning to put Kansas City up 4-1. The Royals would add on more runs in the 8th on an Alex Gordon RBI double followed by a Paulo Orlando sacrifice fly, and a Escobar RBI triple. Johnny Cueto pitched a complete game two hit, one run performance for the win, while Jacob deGrom received the loss.

The series shifted to New York for game three, where Noah Syndergaard faced off against Yordano Ventura. The fireworks in this one started early as Syndergaard threw the first pitch of the game high and tight, brushing back Escobar, and causing the Kansas City bench to become irate. The Royals made Noah pay early for this move when Hosmer grounded into a force out to bring in the game’s first run. The Mets would respond when David Wright crushed a 0-1 pitch for a two run homerun. The Royals would quickly respond in the 2nd when Alex Rios provided and RBI single to tie the game, and a passed ball with Escobar batting would reclaim the lead for Kansas City. After the 2nd inning, Syndergaard would settle into a grove. The bottom of the 3rd would see the Mets reclaim the lead after a line drive homerun off the bat of Curtis Granderson. An RBI single by Conforto in the 4th would give the Mets a 5-3 lead and chase Ventura from this contest early. The Mets would add 4 more runs in the 6th. Juan Uribe would hit a RBI double, and Wright would bring his RBI total to 4 on the day with a single himself. Yoenis Cespedes would hit a sacrifice fly in the inning to increase the Mets lead to 9-3, which is what the Mets would win game three by.

In game four of the series the Royals would send game one winner Chris Young to the mound to face off against the Mets rookie Steven Matz. Matz pitched well in game four giving up an RBi single in the 5th to Alex Gordon and one to Lorenzo Cain in the 6th before being pulled. The Mets would once again get to the Royal bullpen early in this one after Young was removed for a pinch hitter in the 5th inning. The Mets scored two runs in the third inning when Michael Conforto hit a solo homerun and Curtis Granderson hit a sac fly. The Mets would increase their lead to 3-1 after Conforto hit his second homerun of the night. Going into the 8th the Mets once again held a lead, and once again let one slip away. Daniel Murphy committed a key error in the 8th inning that scored Ben Zobrist to tie the game at three, but the Royals weren’t done. Mike Moustakas and Savador Perez would each add RBI singles and the fighting Royals would once again come from behind for a victory. Ryan Madson would be credited with the win, and Tyler Clippard the loss.

On the brink of elimination, the Mets turned to Matt Harvey in game five, and the Royals countered with Edinson Volquez. Curtis Granderson began the night by depositing the third pitch thrown by Volquez over the right center field wall. After the first both pitchers seemed to cruise until Lucas Duda added another run for the Mets with a sacrifice fly. Right before the bottom of the 9th inning, Mets pitching Coach Dan Warthen informed Matt Harvey he would be removed from the game. Harvey pled his case to stay in the game and came out to start the 9th with the Mets holding a 2-0 lead. Harvey issued a leadoff walk to Lorenzo Cain who stole second and then scored on an Eric Hosmer double. The Mets called from that point on their closer Juerys Familia to come through in a rough spot. He got the first out, but Hosmer advanced to third. Salvador Perez then hit a ground ball to third, and after Wright threw the ball to first, Hosmer broke for the plate. Lucas Duda fired home after steeping on first but the throw was way off, and the error allowed Hosmer to score the game tying run with two outs in the 9th. Addison Reed would continue giving away the game for the Mets in the 12 inning when Christian Colon hit an RBI single to break the tie. Daniel Murphy followed that with yet another fielding error,and then the flood gates were opened. Escobar would hit and RBI double before Reed left the game with the bases loaded. Bartolo Colon would enter the game and Lorenzo Cain would clear the bases with 3 RBI double. The Royals would shut down the Mets in the bottom half of the inning to claim their first World Series title in 30 years. Reliever Luke Hochevar would be credited with the win, while Addison Reed would get the loss.

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