The Once and Future Kings

MLB Commisioner's Trophy by M@ Shepard (GFDL)
MLB Commisioner’s Trophy by M@ Shepard (GFDL)

Seriously, Daily Post. If you want to commemorate the World Series, you might as well leave in the possibility that some of us can actually write about the World Series. Walk-off-homer. Really. What does that have to do with the World Series of Baseball?

The baseball postseason has been a ridiculously entertaining romp, with a lot of good baseball. Most of it though came from the preposterous romp of the formerly-decrepit franchise that is the Kansas City Royals. For years the Royals were a terrible, terrible team, racking up a streak of losing seasons in apocalyptic fashion. With that cratering came a raft of high draft picks, several of whom are now figuring in their improbable run at the championship. Hosmer, Moustakas, Butler and Gordon were all high picks, and every one of them has teetered on the precipice of being a bust in the years since they were drafted. None of them projects as a superstar. Some of the players came out of nowhere, particularly the CF combo of Lorenzo Cain and Jarrod Dyson, two unheralded players that no one thought would amount to much.

It was fitting that the Royals eliminated the Oakland Athletics in the first round of the playoffs, because the brand of play they have is quintessential Moneyball. In a year that Billy Beane went all in and traded OF Yoenis Cespedes for SP Jon Lester, his team got tossed out of the ALWC by a KC team that relied on competent pitching, blazing speed and aggressive attacking on the basepaths, and a defense that’s probably the best in baseball.

Speaking of pitching, this is a staff that’s got former Tampa rotation righty James Shield in the role of ace, and a bunch of middling guys behind him. They all benefit from the team’s otherworldly defense, and they’ve simply outlasted the competition. Their eight-game winning streak in the postseason includes four extra-inning games, and every game but one was decided on one or two runs. That success in close games is anchored on their lights-out 7-8-9 reliever combo of Herrera, Davis and Holland. All the starters have to do is get through the sixth inning. Once there, the three RPs will go Mariano Rivera on the opponent.

But.

I don’t think the Royals will win the World Series.

The San Francisco Giants are all about winning. These Giants are in the World Series for the third time in five years and winning both times they were there previously (2010 and 2012). They’re a veteran team that’s got perhaps the best manager in the game. They just beat two other superstar teams, the Washington Nationals and the St. Louis Cardinals. They have their own breakout star, Joe Panik, and have two legitimate superstars – SP Madison Bumgarner and C Buster Posey.

This series promises to be entertaining, and I’m thinking it will go far. My prediction: Giants win in 6.

—–

* Emphasis on future. Yes, the title is deliberately misleading.

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