Playing under American League rules with few reliable options on the bench this season, no manager had as little use for pinch hitters as Kansas City's Ned Yost. Now with the World Series shifting to San Francisco for Game 3 on Friday night, when the pitcher will bat instead of the designated hitter in the NL park, Yost might need to make some extra moves. Fortunately for the Royals, Billy Butler provides a potent bat to call upon - even if the slugger will get just one chance in the batter's box instead of his usual four. A lot of times in the National League you empty out your bench, obviously, more than you do in the American League.'' Butler already has three hits in the Series.
The Kansas City Royals 7-2 victory over the San Francisco Giants in World Series Game 2 didn't necessarily set up perfectly, but it did allow manager Ned Yost to unleash his trio of dominant late-inning relievers with the game hanging in the balance. The main thing that didn't fit Yost's preferred script was having to call on his usual seventh-inning reliever, Kelvin Herrera, to record an additional two outs in the sixth inning. Herrera has done this before during the postseason, recording five outs in the AL wild-game card and six outs in their ALCS Game 1 victory over the Baltimore Orioles. It's something he's proven he can handle, and with a full week off in between outings, he was obviously well rested. Make that extremely well rested. Herrera came right out of the bullpen firing nothing but heat. Eight 100-mph plus fastballs later, the Giants threat was over and many were left in amazement at Herrera's overpowering stuff. That includes ESPN's Jayson Stark, who was moved to tweet the following. Eight fastballs for Herrera in that inning. Your MPH readings: 101, 100, 101, 101, 101, 100, 101, 100. Call the cops. #worldseries — Jayson Stark (@jaysonst) October 23, 2014 The cops you say? Never fear. They're always a poice offer or detective on duty somewhere, and some are equipped with an instant quip for such baseball tweets. @jaysonst I'm sorry but there is nothing we can do. He's just throwing a baseball. — Joseph Murray (@PPDJoeMurray) October 23, 2014 Well played, detective Murray. There are no speed limits in baseball, and no team knows that better than the Royals. Herrera's fastball isn't pleasant to face. To some it may even be unfair, but in baseball terms it's far from criminal. In fact, it's actually quite beautiful. And given how Herrera throws his fastball, it's also rare. Kelvin Herrera was asked if he knows of any other pitcher in baseball with a 100-mph two-seamer. He smiled. "No," he answered. — Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) October 23, 2014 Needless to say, he's not a comfortable at-bat. Herrera was forced to sit around a long time in Game 2 while the Royals scored five runs and San Francisco made four pitching changes in the sixth inning. His command was off and his velocity was slightly down early in the seventh, but he worked around back-to-back walks to keep Kansas City's five-run lead intact. Wade Davis and Greg Holland followed with scoreless innings of their own, as the Royals evened the series at 1-1. BLS H/N: SB Nation More MLB coverage from Yahoo Sports: - - - - - - - Mark Townsend is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @Townie813
Salvador Perez shouted at Hunter Strickland, who shouted right back. The Kansas City Royals streamed from their dugout, the San Francisco Giants from their own. The World Series suddenly had some life. Perez broke open Game 2 with a two-run double in a five-run sixth, and the Royals' cast of clutch relievers kept the Giants in check for a 7-2 victory that evened the Series and spiced things up as it shifts to San Francisco for three games.
The Kansas City Royals were dealt their first postseason setback in Game 1 of the World Series, falling 7-1 to the Madison Bumgarner- and Hunter Pence-led San Francisco Giants at a boisterous Kauffman Stadium. The lopsided result wasn't what they had in mind, obviously, and it was a bit surprising given the unstoppable roll it appeared they were on coming in. The Royals, who are looking for their first world championship since 1985, set an MLB record by winning their first eight postseason games, including the AL wild-card game. Given the franchise's championship drought and the relative ease with which they were able to dispatch the Los Angeles Angels and Baltimore Orioles, they were obviously the story coming into Game 1 and in many circles were considered the favorites until proven otherwise. Unfortunately, at least through one game, it was proven otherwise. The Royals' story actually more closely resembled another recent Cinderella story gone wrong in the World Series. That would be the 2007 Colorado Rockies, who like Kansas City streaked to World Series by winning seven straight games in the postseason and 21 of 22 overall dating back to the regular season, but were quickly brought back to earth in a 13-1 loss to the Boston Red Sox in Game 1. Though it wasn't quite the drubbing Colorado experienced, there were still some eerie similarities, both glaring and subtle, between the two results. • Long layoff at the worst time: In 2007, the Rockies swept through the Philadelphia Phillies and Arizona Diamondbacks and then sat idly by for the next nine days while the Red Sox and Cleveland Indians went seven games in the ALCS. The Royals were only off for five days, compared to four for San Francisco. It's not a Royals excuse or necessarily even a legit excuse to begin with, but any such layoff is awkward and can prove disruptive in October. • First-inning woes: Like the Rockies, Kansas City was down 3-0 in the first inning before the national anthem could stop reverberating through the stadium. Hunter Pence capped San Francisco's rally with a two-run homer off James Shields. Dustin Pedroia greeted Jeff Francis with a homer in 2007, and then Boston sent seven more to the plate.
The Royals' remarkable postseason run came to a grinding halt against Madison Bumgarner and the Giants.
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Royals superfan SungWoo Lee had one former Royals player on his mind when he set foot on the Kauffman Stadium field before World Series Game 1 on Tuesday. The former player was Mike Sweeney. As Lee made his way around the dirt behind home plate wearing a Royals hat with "Super Fan" on the side and a Royals October hooded sweatshirt, he admittedly couldn't stop smiling as documentary crews following his every move. He had arrived in Kansas City just hours prior from his home country of South Korea. SungWoo. pic.twitter.com/DvUpFnfK58 — Dave Brown (@AnswerDave) October 21, 2014 His trip to Kansas City for the World Series was arranged by a documentary crew led by Josh Swade, who directed ESPN's 30 for 30 "There's No Place Like Home." Lee's trip back is being made into a 30 for 30 short film. So the possibility of the movie, the persistence of Swade and the popularity of the story made it a successful sell to Lee's bosses. He's a merchandise manager for a duty free shop in South Korea. However, it wasn't incredibly easy. "Not that easy," Lee said. "I just got approval on Friday and then I still worked on Monday and Tuesday morning I got on the plane. It's crazy." Lee saw his first Royals games in person in August at Kauffman Stadium as he traveled to the midwest for the first time to see the team he adopted in the 1990s. His arrival coincided (caused?) a nine-game Royals' winning streak that included a sweep of the San Francisco Giants. As the Royals stormed through the playoffs to the World Series, the movement to bing Lee back gained momentum. [Photos: Best of World Series Game 1 - Giants at Royals ] Lee will be in attendance for Game 2 as well and doesn't know his plans beyond that. He may go to San Francisco depending on how the Royals are doing or he'll stay in Kansas City and go to watch parties. He said he watched Game 4 of the American Championship Series, the final game of a sweep of the Baltimore Orioles, while at work. "I was at the office. Usually the Major League night games play at 9 a.m. so I just watched game day with a sneaky look. I just tried not to shout all the time with all the plays. I'm really happy to be here. Finally." And he really, really wanted to meet Sweeney. While talking with reporters Lee kept looking over to Sweeney, who was standing and chatting behind the batting cage as the Royals took batting practice. Sweeney was at his home in California when Lee was in Kansas City this summer. "I had never met him in August," Lee said. "I'd like to go see him right now. " After the interviews and Sweeney's chat with Game 1 national anthem singer Trisha Yearwood wrapped up, Lee got his chance. Sweeney almost walked by while Lee was looking the other direction. But a friendly tap on the shoulder spun Lee around and turned his happiness into unbridled enthusiasm as he got to hug his favorite player. But not before jumping for joy. Royals super fan Sung Woo Lee finally gets to Mike Sweeney. He jumped for joy before this hug. pic.twitter.com/fNavxyG1Gm — Nick Bromberg (@NickBromberg) October 21, 2014 Sweeney asked Lee if he had received his emails. Yes, Lee became such a big star during his time in Kansas City that he was receiving emails from one of the most recognizable Royals players of the last 20 years. But as he and Sweeney talked, Lee admitted that he forgot to bring the baseball card he had of Sweeney with him to Kansas City to have it autographed. That's OK, Sweeney said. "How about you come back for the parade?" Sweeney asked him. "Kansas City Royals World Series parade. You come back and bring it and I'll sign it for you." - - - - - - - Nick Bromberg is the editor of From The Marbles on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter! Follow @NickBromberg
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Lorenzo Cain is learning that he doesn't get a reprieve from diaper duty just to play in some silly baseball games. He's also learning that changing diapers is harder than it looks.
Ned Yost has guided the Royals to the World Series with an impulsive managerial style that seems to fit the chaos of October.
KANSAS CITY — The Kansas City Royals considered bringing back right-hander James Shields for Game 4 of the American League Championship Series this past Wednesday, but instead decided against it and went with lefty Jason Vargas. There was the matter of the kidney stone Shields had just passed. Everything worked out, with the Royals beating the Baltimore Orioles 2-1 to advance to the World Series. And Shields is feeling better after getting 11 days of rest before facing the San Francisco Giants on Tuesday night at Kauffman Stadium in Game 1 of the World Series. Reporter Andy McCullough of the Kansas City Star broke the news that Shields hadn't been feeling so hot recently. Actually, Shields said the pain was "excruciating": Shields underwent a CT scan to determine the source of his discomfort. By then, the team’s medical staff deduced he had already passed the stone. Shields still looked wan on Monday afternoon, when a rainout of game three allowed the Royals the opportunity to use him on regular rest for the fourth game. Instead, they went with Vargas as they swept the Orioles. In part, the team felt compelled to keep Vargas fresh for this upcoming engagement with San Francisco. But Shields also benefited from the extra time off. Neither the reporter or the player made a connection between Shields' kidney stone pain and him not pitching up to par. Shields has a 5.63 ERA and has allowed three homers in three postseason starts so far . Do those results have anything to do with passing a kidney stone? Even if they did, Shields probably would deny it: "I haven't pitched the way I wanted to," Shields told a bigger media gathering. "There is no doubt about it. I feel like I definitely could pitch better. But with that said, I feel really good. My bullpen sessions have been really good, and I feel as good as I can feel right now. "So I'm a big believer in amnesia. I've been doing it my whole entire career, and I've had a bunch of bad outings, and I've also come back from them, so I'm not too really worried about it." Not that he'd remember this, either, but one of Shields's best starts of the season came against the Giants in August. He threw a four-hitter in a 5-0 victory, part of a three-game sweep that was part of an eight-game winning streak. More MLB coverage at Yahoo Sports: - - - - - - - David Brown is an editor for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter! Follow @AnswerDave
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