World Series, NYC Marathon share stage

Two major sporting events cross paths for first time in their histories

World Series, NYC Marathon share stage

NEW YORK -- There were two marathons here on Sunday. One was 26.2 miles, and the other 12 innings. Finish time for the latter: 4 hours and 15 minutes.

For the first time in their storied histories, two major sporting events converged in one New York borough: the 45th running of the TCS New York City Marathon, and Game 5 of the 111th Fall Classic between the Royals and Mets, which ended in a 7-2 Kansas City win and World Series title.

Runners were on the streets and on base, with big finishes in both.

Game Date Matchup
Gm 1 Oct. 27 KC 5, NYM 4 (14)
Gm 2 Oct. 28 KC 7, NYM 1
Gm 3 Oct. 30 NYM 9, KC 3
Gm 4 Oct. 31 KC 5, NYM 3
Gm 5 Nov. 1 KC 7, NYM 2 (12)

"I'm a huge fan of the New York City Marathon," said Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred, whose house in Westchester County is full of Boston Marathon qualifiers. "Two of my daughters have run in the marathon multiple times. The last few years, we've had a big party on marathon day at our apartment. This year, we're going to be focused on the World Series. No Manfred runners this year."

"Sunday will be a day to remember for New York City as the eyes of the sports world focus on the greatest athletes in the greatest city in the world," said Peter Ciaccia, race director for the marathon and president, events, for New York Road Runners. "We're excited for a great day for our 50,000 runners and the 25 Mets who will take center stage on this special Sunday."

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio called the convergence "an amazing moment."

"First of all, we believe we are the center of the universe, and now we have proof," he told ABC during the race. "We have the greatest marathon in the world, we have the World Series the same day and we make it look easy, because the NYPD is extraordinary and because all the people of this city are used to doing big things."

Kenya's Stanley Biwott (2 hours, 10 minutes) and Mary Keitany (2 hours, 24 minutes) were the men's and women's winners of the 2015 Marathon. Biwott's victory was his first in a major marathon. Keitany is the first woman to repeat as champion since Paula Radcliffe in '08.

The World Series could be in for a finish line on this day as well, but de Blasio was having none of that as he watched "New York's biggest block party."

"I just want to remind my fellow New Yorkers, down 3 games to 1, still plenty of time for the Mets to come back," he said. "Let's Go Mets."

While there will be blue and orange galore among race attire, there also could be big logistical implications for this particular Sunday. It is not uncommon for multiple sporting events to collide -- the 2009 World Series in Philadelphia butted up against Eagles and Flyers games -- but this is an unprecedented convergence that could pose a challenge.

"Look, I think that one great thing about New York City is it has great transportation capability," Manfred said. "New Yorkers are very imaginative when it comes to getting where you need to be, and I know people are going to find their way to Citi Field for the game on Sunday night."

The race begins in Staten Island, crosses the Verrazano Narrows Bridge into Brooklyn, runs through Queens after the halfway point, crosses the Queensboro Bridge into Manhattan, curls into the Bronx and then returns to Manhattan for its finish in Central Park. Many runners are still going into late afternoon.

Game 5 starts at 8 p.m. ET on FOX in Queens. Fans will begin arriving during the afternoon. The marathon will have already passed through Queens by then, but it's one big city, and there will be overlap.

"Definitely take mass transit, take mass transit, take mass transit," said Mets executive vice president and chief revenue officer Lou DePaoli. "Really, it's going to be the saving grace. Because there are going to be so many people in and around the city, we don't want fans to potentially get hung up in traffic. If you just consistently take the 7 [train], if you take the LIRR [Long Island Railroad], you can get to the ballpark very easily and efficiently."

Never before has a New York club played a World Series game at home on the same day as the New York City Marathon. The marathon is usually in early November, and the World Series has traditionally ended in October. This is one of those few exceptions of a November finish for baseball, and an early date for New York Road Runners led to the convergence.

There have been three previous instances of the Yankees playing a World Series in November. In 2009, the marathon was on Nov. 1, but the Yankees were in Philadelphia for Game 4. In 2001, the marathon was on Nov. 4, but the Yankees were in Arizona for Game 7. In 1981, the marathon was on Oct. 25, but the Yankees were at Dodger Stadium for Game 5.

The New York City Marathon was first run in 1970, and when it was expanded to all five boroughs on Oct. 23, 1977, the Yankees had already won that fall's World Series.

There was one instance where a New York team played any kind of home game on the same day as the New York City Marathon. That was on Sept. 30, 1973, when the Cardinals played the Mets at Shea Stadium as the Mets were making their way toward an eventual World Series appearance.

This time, there will be plenty of people running the race and attending the World Series. That includes Mets assistant home clubhouse manager Dave Berni. Mets EVP and general counsel David Cohen also is doing the doubleheader.

"It's exciting," DePaoli said. "I just think it's going to be a great day for all New Yorkers, for people who are visiting, because you get a chance to take part in really two of the greatest sporting events that you can. We're lucky enough that it's going to happen on the same day. The New York City Marathon and Game 5 of the World Series -- you can't go wrong."

Mark Newman is enterprise editor of MLB.com. Read and join other baseball fans on his MLB.com community blog. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.