The Kansas City Royals sent eleven batters to the plate in the bottom of the second inning, scoring seven runs on eight hits, while chasing Jake Peavy, and changing Game Seven of the 2014 World Series, into a winner-take-all bonanza, that has San Francisco Giants fans, with long memories, edgy at the thought of losing another series the way they lost in 2002, after taking a three games to two lead, and then going back to their opponent’s yard.
Despite never having completed as many as six innings in a postseason contest, Peavy took the ball and once again struggled. He threw 42 pitches, 29 of them for strikes, and apparently the Royals liked what he was throwing, because they hammered out six hits, and never really let up the pressure, for the one-and-a-third innings that Peavy was in there.
The second inning opened up with Alex Gordon and Salvador Perez singling, with Mike Moustakas then doubling Gordon home and Perez to third. After Omar Infante struck out swinging, Alcides Escobar hit a soft grounder to Brandon Belt at first that he misplayed, attempting to both hold Perez at third, and get the out unassisted at first. Unfortunately, while he did succeed in keeping Perez at third, he did not record the out at first, and a moment later, Nori Aoki singled home Perez, and left Moustakas on third, and Perez on second.
Bruce Bochy pulled Peavy and brought in Yusmeiro Petit to face Lorenzo Cain, and he hit a soft blooper into center field that dropped for a single, scoring both Moustakas and Escobar, Aoki ending up on third. Eric Hosmer followed with a double, scoring both Aoki and Cain, and Billy Butler capped the scoring in the second with still another double, the score stood at 7-0, and Bochy started managing for the seventh game.
In fairness to Petit, it was the first time this season that he was brought in with the bases loaded. In an industry where guys know their roles, and perform well in them, it is difficult to hold Petit completely accountable for the debacle that he helped create, when he was being asked to do something that he had not been asked to do all season.
The Royals scored single runs in the third, fifth and seventh innings, while the Giants put up a total of six hits on the board for the game, five of them singles. The best opportunity for the Giants to score, came immediately after the seven-run outburst, when Yordano Ventura loaded the bases on three walks, in the top of the third, only to have Buster Posey, still looking for his first extra-base hit of the postseason, hit meekly into an inning-ending double play.
The game was one-sided, a 10-0 drubbing, that evened the series at three games apiece, and left the Kansas City Royals and their fans feeling confident about the outcome.
Whether or not the Giants can recover their composure enough to finish the job, will be determined Wednesday night, in Kansas City.