Opinion of Kingman's Performance

Thursday, October 20, 2011

A Classic in the Fall Classic, Good Old Country Hardball

Tonight’s World Series matchup between the Rangers and Cardinals was a throwback to the 60’s.  A 2-1 affair that was a pitching duel extraodinaire.  Every at bat intense.  As the game progressed, each pitch more riveting.  Fans clinging to the edge of their seats.  A real nail biter in the brisk autumn air.  Reminiscent of Welch vs. Reggie, Palmer vs. Koufax, Gibson vs. McClain, Brooks sacrificing his body to make plays, El Tiante vs. the Big Red Machine, Clemente bouncing around the base paths against the defending Champ O’s,  Graig Nettles defensive gems crushing Dodger hearts and turning the series around, Fergie throwing out Bando.
It was good old National League style baseball in an N.L. park.  No D.H., no waiting for the 3-run homer.  It was a game where you needed to move the runner over or put on a "run and hit."  A contest where Pujols missed hitting one out by an eye lash, where Andrus and Kinsler flashed the leather more than once to save a run and the starters brought their “A” game on the biggest stage of the year.
This World Series classic entered the 9th inning where the Rangers had to put everything on the line, down 1-0.  Where the Cardinals brought in their fireballing closer, (Motte) who threw nothing but heat, and we all knew it was coming.  Where a leadoff man on board brought true tension to the hometown faithful, and then moments our hearts jumped by a bang-bang play resulting from a clutch stolen base by Ian Kinsler.  (And a stand up clutch call by umpire Ron Kulpa who showed why he is officiating in the Fall Classic.  A great call, and correct one at that).
Kinsler's clutch steal in the 9th.  Kulpa makes the right call.  
It was a game in which the slightest miscue could cost either team the game, and that occurred as Albert Pujols failed to field the Jon Jay cutoff throw, allowing Andrus to take an extra base in the ninth.  Where Texas’ base path aggression forced the Cardinals into panic mode in the 9th.  Extra bases were taken out of sure hustle, sacrifice flies looked bigger than ever in this matchup.

Albert Pujols failed to catch the cut off throw from Jon Jay.  It cost the Cardinals a base and eventually was the difference in the game.
Yes, it was good old country hardball.  Something you’d expect out of the heartland of the nation.  Pitchers heaving it with all their might.  Runners advancing on the base paths on every opportunity.  Defenders putting their bodies on the line to make plays that usually aren’t made.  It’s all on the line and for some of these guys, its the only time in their entire lives that everything is on the line.
What a great game!  This has the makings of a great series.  Now if only they could ban the Designated Hitter for the remainder.
You can breath now Nolan
One last comment:
Unbelieveable, Nick Punto bunting in that final at bat in the ninth.  Stupid move by LaRussa.  How was he going to lay down a bunt against Felix's rising 98 MPH fastball on this bitter cold night?  A wasted out and crucial mistake.

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