Wild Card Postseason Magic

Wow. How about them Royals!? 4-0 sweep of the Orioles. Now 8-0 in postseason play, and potentially a match up, with the two wild card teams from this seasons playoff. It would be the first time since the inception of the wild card game, that both teams met in the World Series, and would be just the second time in the history of the wild card, that both teams were the playing for the crown. The last time being in 2002, when the Giants went up against the Anaheim Angels. That series went seven games, in favor of the Angels. But the NLCS isn’t quite done for the Giants as of yet. Though up 3-1, both the Giants and Cardinals know how quickly things can change. In 2012, St. Louis had a 3-1 series lead on Giants, heading into game 5 in St Louis. Giants P Barry Zito, who hadn’t pitched well all postseason, and the regular season, for that matter, came out firing, pitching 7 and two thirds scoreless innings in a 3 pitcher shutout of the Cards, 5-0. Games 6 and 7 in San Francisco were all the Giants, all the time, outscoring the Cardinals 15-1 in the final two games. This time around, it’s the red birds with the deficit, and having to rely on “their guy” on the road in game 5, as Adam Wainwright, who has been less than an ace this postseason, and in 2 starts, hasn’t gotten out of the fifth inning. Not to mention an era of 8. Madison Bumgarner on the other hand, for the Giants, has been the ace that everybody thought he would be. Allowing only 2 runs in 24 and two-thirds innings, while posting a 2-1 record, and in his last start vs the Cardinals in game 1 of this NLCS, 7 and two-thirds scoreless innings.
The Giants, much like the Royals, seems like a teams of destiny at this point. The only thing that could seemingly take the buzz away from the Royals at this point, might be the fact that they breezed through the postseason, not losing a game. The fact the Royals wrapped up the American league postseason on Wednesday, means that the Kansas City will have 5 days of rest before the World Series starts up. The last team to have five days rest before the start of the World Series was the Detroit Tigers in 2012, and the Tigers experienced getting swept by the Giants. In 2007, 11 days of rest occurred, for the Rockies when they swept the Diamondbacks. The year prior to that, the Tigers showed up again in the record books for the wrong reason, getting 10 days of rest, before playing the Cardinals, who just came from a seven games series against the Mets, virtually on no rest or regular rest. So too much time is shown to be a problem, but how about if the Giants do beat the Cardinals tonight in game 5 of the NLCS?! That would mean the Giants have a little rest too, thus canceling out that rest factor for the Royals, and in turn, I believe giving Kansas City the edge. However, if this Cardinals-Giants series goes six, even seven games, I give the edge to the National League, heading into the World Series on Tuesday. Either way, you would think the National League would prevail, due to the amount of postseason success for both the Giants and Cardinals, but this ain’t your typical, lack of postseason experience, in the Royals. KC seems to be operating on a whole other level at this point, and if this World Series goes into extra innings at all, you almost just give the game to the Royals, because of their late inning magic so far. Having said that though, that is indeed why they play the game and this World Series should be quite the spectacle, whatever team is represented in the National League.

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