Your World Series Game 7 Companion

If you’re the kind of person who equates sitting through a game of baseball to watching paint dry while eating peanuts, we completely understand. For a good majority of the 162-game regular season, we might even agree. But tonight’s game is going to be very, very different. Two teams with a lot to prove are going head-to-head in the underdog’s home stadium, where parents are bringing their newborns and paying over $1500 a ticket to be there. This is what sports are all about, and they’re always a sight to be seen. 

So even if you only ever “watch” baseball when you’re drinking beer at a Jays game for your friend’s birthday, this is why you want to pay at least some attention tonight.

Why You Should Watch

– It’s a Game 7 – this is the game all athletes dream about playing in. The chips can’t be stacked any higher, which means it promises to be three hours worth of highlight-worthy gameplay.

– The Kansas City Royals are a true Cinderella story, barely sneaking into the post-season with a thrilling come-from-behind victory in the AL wild-card game against Oakland. They have only won one World Series in their history, and that was way back in 1985. It’s been a rough go since, finishing last in their division every season from 2004 to 2012, and despite putting up their best record since 1994, finishing third (out of five) in their AL Central Division in 2013. This year has been full of hope, and if they can pull it out, it will mean a whole heck of a lot for a state whose year has been pretty tough.

– The San Francisco Giants, on the other hand, are looking for their third title in five years tonight, having gone all the way in 2010 and 2012. Despite their recent success, and the fact that their roster salaries add up to over 50 per cent more than that of the Royals, Sports Illustrated, albeit reluctantly, predicted they would lose this one. After falling by a score of 10-0 last night, though, you can bet they’ll be coming with some fire tonight, which will be exciting to watch with the talent that team has.

What you need to know

– The game is in KC, so the Royals have the advantage of playing at home, or what they cleverly call “home-field advantage”. A visiting team hasn’t won a World Series in a Game 7 situation since the 1979 Pittsburgh Pirates. Home teams are 9-0 since then.

– The starting pitchers are likely to be Jeremy Guthrie for the Royals and Tim Hudson for the Giants, but look for San Fran to bring in their storied hero, Madison Bumgarner (that’s right, not Baumgartner or anything else less embarrassing), to relieve him.

– If your crowd starts yapping about “small-ball”, don’t panic. They’re referring to the strategy that uses short hits or bunts instead to get (fast) runners on base, then sacrifice flies and base-stealing to advance them, as opposed to homerun swings and power hitting. This is the tactic that got the Royals through the early stages of the playoffs, after finishing last in the league in home runs during the regular season. The Giants have adapted well, which hasn’t been hard considering they play in a stadium that favours this style of play.

Pop culture fun facts

– A few radio stations in San Francisco have banned Lorde’s mega (annoying) hit “Royals” from the airwaves.

– The anthem singer totally messed up the words to the Star Spangled Banner the other night. That’s what you get for inviting a washed-up one-hit-wonder to sing at a major sporting event.

– Performing the anthem for Game 7 is Grammy-winning opera singer and Royals fan Joyce DiDonato. She turned down the chance to sing at Game 6 because she had previously commitments: teaching at a New York middle-school.

#NOTABLE  

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