Monday, November 2, 2015

Forever Loyal

Please pause, while I take a moment to pat myself on the back. The World Series went pretty much how I expected it to. I mean, I thought it would go six games, but I was pretty close. I told my wife, and quite a few friends, the Royals would win the series. And the reasons behind my thinking, proved to be the exact reasons why they did. It’s been said over and over again, but the Royals don’t make many mistakes. And more than that, they never miss an opportunity to capitalize when their opponent does. I just heard a stat on the radio, that the Mets lead the series for 11 more innings than the Royals. Yet we only managed one win.

I’ve never been a big fan of the disclaimer “no offense, but” only I really mean it. No offense, but the Mets handed the Royals three wins. Not because we didn’t care, or lacked heart, but we made big mistakes at key moments. And to their absolute credit, the Royals made the most out of all of them. And make no mistake, they helped cause them. The hell with the stat heads, and I’ve always considered myself to be one, but the Royals won because they apply pressure in every facet of the game. They put the ball in play, and make you get them out. They get on base, and then put pressure on the pitcher and catcher with their base running. They apply pressure by running aggressively, so a first basemen has to hurry a pretty simple throw, but one he doesn’t have to make often. It’s why I’ve enjoyed watching them the last two seasons so much. It’s how I always tried to play the game, even if I was so bad and played at such a low level. Yet, had Cespedes caught Escobar’s fly ball in game one (or had our Gold Glove winning center fielder been in the game, as he should have been) we very well may have won game one.

In game four, Daniel Murphy’s error cost us a two run lead. Then there was Cespedes’ running mistake in the bottom of the 9th. And last night, if Lucas Duda makes an accurate throw home, that game is over right there. So that’s what stings the most this morning. We could have, and should have, won those games.

Luckily for me, the sting is lessened by the fact that the Royals win made my girls so happy. Unfortunately, their happiness was curtailed by their sympathy for me, and I really wish they were able to properly bask in the glory. But for me, this loss isn’t a complete loss. The better team won, and they’re a great group of guys who are nearly impossible to root against. The family is happy, and the city is getting some much deserved shine. And the Mets start 2016 right back here in Kansas City in 153 days, when we will get after taking care of some unfinished business. Man, baseball is a helluva game.