The Royals, as you may have read or heard a bit this postseason, don't strike out a great deal. It is part of the organization's DNA that says -- contrary to the many teams that see strikeouts as just another out -- "put the ball in play!''
"You have to put pressure on the defense,'' Royals general manager Dayton Moore said after his club's Game 6 win over the Blue Jays clinched the American League Championship Series. "That's how tight games are won."
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It's how the Royals have come back all postseason long, including Saturday night's Game 4 of the World Series. They rallied with a three-run eighth, sparked when the Mets' defense cracked.
The Royals' seventh comeback victory of this postseason put them one win from their first title since 1985.
"That's what we've been doing all postseason long, really," first baseman Eric Hosmer said. "Just putting together a big inning. Any time they make a mistake, we capitalize on it, and that's what championship teams do."
The Royals entered the eighth trailing 3-2, with righthander Tyler Clippard on the mound for the Mets after Addison Reed pitched a scoreless seventh.
Clippard retired Alcides Escobar on a comebacker but walked Ben Zobrist and Lorenzo Cain.
That brought Mets manager Terry Collins out to bring in closer Jeurys Familia, whose blown save in the ninth inning of Game 1 helped pave the way for Kansas City's tone-setting 14-inning victory.
Familia, facing Hosmer, got what he was looking for as he hit a chopper to Daniel Murphy at second. At the very least, one out looked assured. But the charging Murphy saw the ball skirt under his glove, and the error allowed Zobrist to tie the score at 3.
Mike Moustakas smacked a sharp grounder into rightfield for an RBI single and Salvador Perez's added a line-drive single to right-center for a 5-3 lead.
"It's a group that has the utmost confidence in themselves," Royals manager Ned Yost said. "I don't think at any point these guys thought that they were going to lose tonight."
Wade Davis, who had a 0.94 ERA this season and hasn't allowed a run in 92/3 postseason innings, picked up a six-out save.
"The whole series changes if we go 2-2 right here," Hosmer said. "They've got [Matt] Harvey on the mound [in Game 5] at home. It changes the momentum big time. It was huge for us to get this win. It's tough to beat a team three times in a row in this league."