After a rollercoaster of a postseason, it has finally come down to the best team in the AL and the NL, the Royals and the Mets. The Royals look for redemption from last season when they made it all the way to game 7 in the World Series, but couldn’t pull it off by losing to the San Fransisco Giants in the bottom of the ninth with the tying run at third base. Even with how close the Royals came last year, it has been 30 years since they have won the World Series, winning in 1985 against the St. Louis Cardinals. The Mets on the other hand look for their first World Series title in 29 years, beating the Boston Red Sox in 1986. The last time the Mets were in the World Series was 15 years ago in 2000, losing to the New York Yankees. Both teams are looking for a title that would end large droughts, but only one team can achieve it. The Royals are coming off of a hectic ALCS against the Toronto Blue Jays, going into game 6, winning off a single in the bottom of the eighth hit by Eric Hosmer scoring Lorenzo Cain, and holding the Blue Jays scoreless in the ninth to win 4-3. The Mets completely dominated their series, sweeping the Cubs in four games.
The Royals need strong performances in the World Series by stars such as Alcides Escobar who has been crushing the ball in the postseason with a .364 batting average which leads the Royals this postseason. Eric Hosmer who has had a solid postseason putting up a .231 batting average, but his batting average doesn’t show how productive at the plate he has been producing 15 RBI’s by hits, sacrifice flys, and even groundouts. Other notable mentions in the Royals lineup are Ben Zobrist with a .315 batting average, and Kendrys Morales with 10 RBI’s. With the Royals lineup producing hits and runs no matter who is at the plate, it will be hard for the Mets to contain that hot bats of the Royals.
Daniel Murphy will be the Royals main concern as he has put up huge numbers this postseason for the Mets with a .383 batting average, 11 RBI’s, and 41 total bases. He amazingly broke a major league record this postseason hitting a home run in six consecutive games. He is key for the Mets in the World Series, as most of the offensive production has been through Murphy. If the Royals can find a way to quite Murphy’s bat, the Mets might have a tough time pushing runs across.
The pitching for the Royals hasn’t been lights out by any means this postseason, but they have had some quality starts. Johnny Cueto had a lights out game in game 5 of the ALDS against the Houston Astros. Cueto is key for the Royals in the World Series. He has been very inconsistent, having a subpar start, and then having an MVP start. The Royals need him to be lights out in the World Series. Yordano Ventura has started four games this postseason and has not put up a solid performance so far. With a postseason ERA of 5.09, the Royals need the young pitcher to find his groove, and put up a solid performance when the time comes. With the Royals pitching staff struggling a bit, it promises well for the Mets to get the offense going and leave it up to their pitching staff.
The Mets pitching staff has been dominant, with young star Jacob deGrom going 3-0 in the postseason, he seems to be untouchable. Also with stellar performances in the postseason is Matt Harvey going 2-0, and Noah Syndergaard going 1-1. If the Mets pitching can continue to dominate as well as they have been throughout the postseason, it may be enough to silence the bats all throughout the Royals lineup.
With the teams seeming to be opposites in this years postseason with the Royals dominating with their bats, and the Mets dominating with their pitching, the World Series could go either way. If the Royals can continue to stay hot and figure out the untouchable pitching of the Mets, they could run away with the title. However if the Mets pitching can contain the Royals offense and capitalize on opportunities, it will be their series to lose.
Photo taken from baseballreflections.com