KANSAS CITY (AFP) – 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 fairytale 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 to 2000.
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 and 1946.
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.
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.
Yet the Royals impressed every rival with a young and talented squad that defied expectations and ended the title dreams of favoured teams like the Los Angeles Angels and Baltimore Orioles.