World Series Game 1 – San Francisco Giants at Kansas City Royals
John BensonNo comments
The World Series kicks off on Tuesday night with the San Francisco Giants facing the Kansas City Royals in KC. The pitching matchup is as expected with southpaw Madison Bumgarner facing the right-handed James Shields.
There was some question in the media whether the former would get the nod considering his high pitch count this season. Giants manager Bruce Bochy said, “I think I would’ve insulted him if I checked with him. He’s a big, strong guy. His last game I thought he had great stuff. It’s not like he’s thrown 120-130 pitches. His workload has been under control.”
The 18-game-winning Bumgarner was voted NLCS MVP after his Giants defeated the St. Louis Cardinals in five games. One Giants pitcher who remains in question is two-time Cy Young Award winner Tim Lincecum, who hasn’t pitched since late September.
Bochy said, “I’ve been thinking about Timmy, trust me. Timmy’s done a lot for us, and we know that. Timmy’s got a stiff neck right now but we talked about him throwing to hitters. He’s still on the roster. I don’t think it’s serious. I’m pretty sure at some point he’ll be in the game.”
As for Shields, Kansas City Manager Ned Yost said, “There’s never been a question mark. We’ll go [with] James Shields in Game 1, [and Yordano] Ventura in Game 2. That’s as far as I’m going.”
Going with Shields in game one was a no-brainer for Yost. In the regular season, Shields went 14-8 with a 3.21 ERA. Yost said, “He’s earned the nickname Big Game James for a reason.”
After sweeping the Orioles in the ALCS, the Royals are 8-0 this postseason (4-0 home, 4-0 away). They are the first team to start a playoffs with eight straight wins. Dating back to the regular season, the Royals have an 11 game winning streak on the go. The Giants have also made quick work of their opponents this playoffs, going 8-2 overall (4-1 home, 4-1 away).
For game one, the odds opened up with Madison Bumgarner as the favorite (-114) but quickly moved to -105 for both pitchers. It’s hard to bet against the Cinderella story that is the Royals post-season.
(Photo: Keith Allison [https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/].)