With their backs against the wall, the Kansas City Royals came through in the clutch, dismantling the San Francisco Giants on Tuesday by a score of 10-0 to force a Game 7 in this year's World Series. Baseball doesn't get any better than this.
After two games in which Kansas City's lineup was underwhelming, its bats woke up across the board, as nine different players combined for 15 hits. Meanwhile, San Francisco's pitching looked awful, as starter Jake Peavy, the usually solid Yusmeiro Petit, Jean Machi and Hunter Strickland each allowed at least one run to score.
The 2014 World Series has already been full of twists and turns, and perhaps it's only fitting that Game 7 will take place just prior to Halloween. Rest assured, we're in line to see plenty of tricks and treats on Wednesday.
As we await the conclusion of the baseball season, let's look at all of the essential viewing information and predict the outcome for a pivotal Game 7.
Series: Tied 3-3
When: Wednesday, October 29
Where: Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri
Time: 8 p.m. ET
Live Stream: MLB.tv (requires subscription)
Preview and Prediction
What a mess Game 6 was for the Giants. Of course, Pablo Sandoval and Hunter Pence each came away with a hit each, but the rest of the lineup simply couldn't get going against the hard-throwing Yordano Ventura.
The rookie was absolutely poised on the mound in the biggest game of his young career. Despite pitches reaching upward of 100 mph, he remained in complete control, going seven strong innings while allowing just three hits and zero runs for a 1.46 ERA. Kansas City's official Twitter account relayed his final stat line:
The fact that Ventura and Co. forced another game doesn't bode well for San Francisco, according to ESPN Stats & Info:
All of a sudden, the Royals have all the momentum heading into the season's final game. The team's lineup is very streaky, but when it heats up, it gets extremely hot. That's exactly what happened on Tuesday in front of a jam-packed home crowd in the second inning.
The team scored a remarkable seven runs in the second, and incredibly enough, there wasn't a single home run involved. A hot streak at the plate combined with speed on the bags and intelligent baserunning is how this team got to the World Series unscathed, and now it's doing it again.
SportsCenter summed up the game's second inning perfectly:
Wednesday features a rematch of Game 3 pitchers Tim Hudson and Jeremy Guthrie. They put up very similar numbers the last time they squared off, and the end result was the closest game in this World Series, as Kansas City notched a 3-2 victory.
Also in that game, both teams' bullpens finished with 0.00 ERAs, as none of the contest's eight relievers allowed a single run once the starters where pulled. The Royals combination of Kelvin Herrera, Wade Davis and Greg Holland even went as far as combining for a 3.1-inning no-hitter.
Due to what should be a rocking Kauffman Stadium on Wednesday, a Royals lineup that will have a bevy of confidence and momentum and a bullpen capable of shutting down a Giants offense that struggled in Game 6, the nod has to go to the Royals.
Kansas City takes it all this year.
Prediction: Royals 5, Giants 3