Roger Schlueter

MLB Notebook: Rookie, big bats keep Royals' hopes alive

MLB Notebook: Rookie, big bats keep Royals' hopes alive

After splitting the first two games in St. Louis in the 1982 World Series, the Cardinals took their show on the road to Milwaukee, won Game 3, and then dropped two straight to head back to Busch Stadium down, 3-2.

For that Game 6, Cards manager Whitey Herzog enlisted the services of a 25-year-old rookie right-hander named John Stuper, who had taken a no-decision in his Game 2 start -- a Redbirds win. Facing Hall of Famer Don Sutton in this potentially decisive game, Stuper was one of the stars of the show. He went the distance, allowed four hits and one run, and cruised to a victory as his club trampled Ned Yost and the rest of the Brewers, 13-1.

It's an extended narrative that has a number of parallels to the saga being authored by Yordano Ventura and the Royals in 2014, and now there's one contest left -- one more affair between San Francisco and Kansas City to determine if the final outcome in the 1982 Fall Classic -- a win for the home-advantaged Cardinals to claim their first title in 15 years -- serves as one additional connection to the way this year's World Series has been shaped.

  Date     Recaps Highlights
Gm 1 Oct. 21     SF 7, KC 1 video
Gm 2 Oct. 22     KC 7, SF 2 video
Gm 3 Oct. 24     KC 3, SF 2 video
Gm 4 Oct. 25     SF 11, KC 4 video
Gm 5 Oct. 26     SF 5, KC 0 video
Gm 6 Oct. 28     KC 10, SF 0 video
Gm 7 Oct. 29     SF 3, KC 2 video

2014 World Series: Giants vs. Royals, Game 6
The Royals built a seven-run lead in the second and received seven scoreless innings from Ventura on the way to a 10-0 win over the Giants on Tuesday, forcing a decisive Game 7.

• Ventura finished his night with seven innings of three-hit ball, and he picked up the win -- his first of this year's World Series (after a no-decision in Game 2). With the victory, Ventura became the first rookie pitcher to start and win a Game 6 since Stuper in 1982. Ventura was the eighth pitcher in World Series history to have a Game 6 start conclude with at least seven scoreless innings. Among these eight, he was the youngest at 23 years and 147 days old, and his three hits allowed were tied for the second fewest (Tom Glavine allowed one hit in 1995).

• The Royals' second-inning explosion saw them collect five singles and three doubles to help account for the seven runs. Those seven runs represent the highest single-frame total for Kansas City in a postseason game, and fell three shy of the most for any team in one World Series inning.

The Royals' 10 runs in the game were the second most for the franchise in a World Series contest, falling one shy of the 1985 team's tally in Game 7 against the Cards. The 10 runs were eighth most for a team in a Game 6 and the fifth most in a World Series shutout.

The Royals' 15 hits came from every starter having at least one. Before this game, there had been 23 instances in World Series history of all nine of a team's starters having at least one knock, with the Giants in Game 2 of this World Series being the most recent. Before this World Series, this had never happened twice in the same Fall Classic.

• Kansas City's Lorenzo Cain reached safely four times (two walks, a single and a double) and drove in three runs.

It was the third time this postseason Cain had reached safely at least four times, with the previous two performances coming in the first two games of the American League Championship Series. Cain was the 16th player to have three or more such games in a postseason, and the second Royals player -- following George Brett in 1985 -- among the collection. Barry Bonds (2002), Carlos Beltran ('04), David Ortiz ('04), and Albert Pujols ('11) share the top mark, with four apiece.

There had been only one No. 3 hitter in a World Series Game 6 to reach safely at least four times and drive in at least three runs before Cain. In 1968, Detroit's Al Kaline was 3-for-4 with four RBIs and a hit-by-pitch in a 13-1 rout of St. Louis. For all players -- regardless of batting order slot -- Cain and Kaline are two of six to have such a line in a Game 6, with the Cardinals' Lester Bell ('26), the Cubs' Stan Hack ('45), the Yankees' Reggie Jackson ('77) and the Cards' Lance Berkman (2011) the others.

Cain was one of six Royals players to have a multihit game. For the outfielder, this performance marked his seventh multihit game of the 2014 postseason -- a figure that ties him with Willie Wilson (1985) for the most for a Royals player. Alcides Escobar and Eric Hosmer each collected his sixth multihit game of the postseason for Kansas City on Tuesday.

The six players with at least two hits fell one player shy of the mark for the most ever in a World Series game. The teams with seven: the 1921 Giants (Game 3), the 1979 Pirates (Game 4), the 1986 Red Sox (Game 2), the 1991 Braves (Game 5), and the 2001 Diamondbacks (Game 6).

Mike Moustakas' long ball in the seventh represented his fifth homer of the 2014 postseason, giving him the most for a Royals player in a single year. The third baseman had been tied with Willie Aikens, who hit all four of his in the 1980 World Series. Moustakas is the 38th player to hit at least five homers in a postseason, with eight -- a mark shared by Bonds (2002), Beltran ('04) and Nelson Cruz ('11) -- being the top mark.

• Hosmer, with a single and double Tuesday, matched Wlson's club mark of 20 hits in a single postseason. Cain is right behind the pair with 19.

Hunter Pence went 1-for-4 in the loss, with his second-inning double representing the Giants' only extra-base hit of the contest. Pence is 10-for-23 in the Fall Classic and has four extra-base hits. Those 10 hits leave Pence two shy of the Giants' high mark for a World Series -- a standard set by Buck Herzog in the 1912 Fall Classic.

Roger Schlueter is senior researcher for MLB Productions. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.