Letters of Intent
By Bob Elliott
KANSAS CITY _ Ned Yost had been in the exact same position as the San Francisco Giants players when they arrived at Kauffman Stadium Tuesday afternoon.
Walking into Busch Stadium in St. Louis with the rest of the Milwaukee Brewers he needed one win and two chances to get it, 32 Octobers ago.
Like the Giants before Game 6 of the 110th World Series Tuesday night. Yost and his Kansas City Royals were down 3-2 in best-of-seven set to declare the champ-EEENS of the world … excluding teams from Japan, Cuba, etc.
And the Royals were in good shape if history has taught us anything.
This one wasn’t pretty as Game 6 had Giants fans either reaching for remote control of throwing it, as the Royals scored seven times in the second on the way to a 10-0 romp.
So as Hall of Fame broadcaster Jack Buck used to tell his Cardinals audience “we’ll see you all tomorrow night folks” for Game 7 Wednesday night.
Back in 1982, Yost was a back-up to talented catcher Ted Simmons with the Brewers. They went to St. Louis and lost twice.
Since then home teams have owned the final segment of the World Series in it’s 2-3-2 format when the Series went that far,
This Royals win gave home teams a 23-3 record in Games 6 and 7 dating to 1982.
And the home team has outscored the visitiors 155-65.
So who do you like Wednedsay night as the Giants Tim Hudson faces Jeremy Guthrie of the Royals?
In Kansas City?
The World Series does not always go six or seven games every year but of the 10 times it has since 1982, the home team has won eight.
The only exceptions?
Your Toronto Blue Jays who won Game 6, 4-3 in 11 innings over the Atlanta Braves in Atlanta in 1992.
And the 2003 Florida Marlins as Josh Beckett blanked the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium on five hits, first time the Yanks had been blanked at home since Milwaukee Braves and Lew Burdette in 1957.
An hour after Beckett’s final pitch Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria ran around the bases and slud into home … as Joe DiMaggio, BabeRuth and Billy Martin spun in their graves.
Visiting teams have seen ugly outcomes and by gruesome scores:
Yost’s Brewers were outscored 19-4 by the Cards the final two games; the Royals rallied from down 3-2 to outscore the Cards 13-1 in 1985; the New York Mets beat the Boston Red Sox 14-10 in 1986; the Minnesota Twins knocked off the Cards the final two games 15-7 in 1987; the Twins beat the Braves 5-3, thanks to Jack Morris pitching 10 scoreless in Game 7 in 1991; the Arizona Dimaondbacks whomped the New York Yankees by a combined 18-4 the final two games in 2001; the Anaheim Angels returned home to outscore the Giants 10-6 the next year and the St. Louis outsocred the Texas Rangers 16-11 as David Freese bat turned magical in 2011 as home teams won Games 6 and 7.
The 1993 Blue Jays, 1995 Braves, 1996 Yanks, 2009 Yanks and last year’s Red Sox returned home with 3-2 leads and all won in six games, outscoring the visitors by a 25-12 count.
So who do you like in Game 7?
Giants or Royals?
Or rather home or away?
In Game: Where did this one turn? When they turned on the lights … Mike Moustakas homered, while Eric Hosmer, with a Baltimore chop over short, Billy Butler, Lorenzo Cain, Omar Infante, Alcides Escobar and Moustakas all doubled for the Royals … Giants starter Jake Peavy had two base runners in the first and only retired on man in the second. He faced 11 hitters and retired four, allowing five runs on six hits and a walk … In 337 career starts he’s gone less than two innings once … Madison Bumgarner’s ERA in six post-season starts is 1.13. The Giants starters have combined for a 5.40 ERA in 10 starts.
And the other year: We really don’t recall a lot about the 1924, only that Tom Zachary pitched the Senators to a 2-1 win over the New York Giants. And then with one out in the bottom of the 12th Earl McNeely doubled home Muddy Ruel, who had reached on an error to win Game 7.
Post-game: One scribe told Giants manager Bochy that he had “a million tweets tonight” saying to start “Bumgarner instead of Tim Hudson.”
“There’s a lot of managers out there and I understand,” Bochy told reporters. “But this guy just pitched (Sunday). He’s going on two days rest. He just threw a complete game. Our confidence is in Tim Hudson.
“You know he’s human. I mean you can’t push him that much. He’ll be available if we need him, but to start him? That’s asking a lot. I have a good pitcher going. He’s done a great job for us. That’s the reason.
“So, when they Tweet you … just tell them that.”
In 140 characters. Or less.
After he was knocked out Peavy spend time watching video with Hudson to come up with a game plan on how to pitch the red-hot Royals.
“Bruce is a guy everyone fights like heck for him,” said Hudson. “He makes us feel like we’re better than we are. Bumgarner is an absolute animal. A stud. He’ll be out there … hopefully it’s late in the game.
“He wanted the ball Sunday and he’ll want it for Game 7.”