San Francisco Giants Poised to Win World Series After Slamming Kansas City Royals in Game 4


Oct 25, 2014; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco Giants pinch hitter Michael Morse (right) celebrates with right fielder Hunter Pence (8) after scoring a run against the Kansas City Royals in the 7th inning during game four of the 2014 World Series at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

The Kansas City Royals hit on a winning formula in Game 3 of the 2014 World Series: get a lead and hand the tame to their bullpen. They tried that again in Game 3 but a tired relief corps allowed the San Francisco Giants to score nine runs over three innings to even the Series at 2-2. The 11-4 victory also gives San Francisco the upper hand in taking the championship.

The problem for the Royals in pulling their starter early and relying on the three-headed monster at the back end of their pen — Kelvin Herrera, Wade Davis, Greg Holland — is that it’s difficult to call on them, en masse on successive days.

More from Cincinnati Reds

The World Series, with it’s heavy travel schedule, often gives teams a day off in between games, but Games 3 and 4 were played on successive days, which spelled trouble for KC.

When the Giants got to starter Jason Vargas in the fifth inning, manager Ned Yost brought in Jason Frasor and Danny Duffy to stop the bleeding. Then, Yost called on Brandon Finnegan to start the sixth, as in Game 3.

This time, though, the combination of Yost’s questionable calls, the Giants’ new familiarity with Finnegan, and the short turnaround time for the reliever yielded different results.

San Francisco scored five runs off Finnegan before he was lifted in the seventh, and the Giants never looked back.

Now, San Francisco has knockout ace Madison Bumgarner in line to start Game 5 at home tonight, while KC will send out James Shields again.

This clearly lines out as a win for the Giants, and even if the Royals were to take Game 6 back in Kansas City, Bumgarner would be available again for Game 7.

In other words, their Game 4 victory could have just sealed the Series for San Francisco.

Of course, just about anything can happen over the course of three games, and even an ace can falter — see Clayton Kershaw. You gotta like the Giants’ chances at this point, though.