Royals on brink of World Series crown after beating Mets in Game 4
NEW YORK, USA - Salvador Perez and Mike Moustakas singled in the go-ahead runs Saturday, October 31 (Sunday Manila time) during an eighth-inning comeback and the Kansas City Royals beat the New York Mets 5-3 to reach the brink of their first World Series title in 30 years.
The Royals seized a 3-1 lead in Major League Baseball's best-of-7 final and could win their first crown since 1985 with another road victory in game 5 Sunday.
Kansas City, which lost last year's World Series in seven games to San Francisco, also came from behind to win the first two games of this year's World Series and in all have fought back after trailing in seven of 10 playoff triumphs this year.
The Mets were leading 3-2 in the eighth inning when relief pitcher Tyler Clippard walked Ben Zobrist and Lorenzo Cain, prompting New York manager Terry Collins to insert closing 26-year-old Dominican right-handed relief ace Jeurys Familia.
But Kansas City's Eric Hosmer chopped an infield ground ball that went under the glove of Mets second baseman Daniel Murphy for an error that scored Zobrist to level the score.
Moustakas followed with a single just past a diving Murphy into right field that plated Cain and gave the Royals their first lead of the game at 4-3.
Perez then smacked a single to right, his third hit of the game, to score Hosmer from third to stretch the Kansas City edge.
Royals closer Wade Davis shut down the Mets in the eighth but allowed Murphy and Yoenis Cespedes singles in the ninth as the tension built.
But New York's Lucas Duda flew out to third baseman Moustakas, who quickly flipped the ball to first base to pick off Cespedes and complete a game-ending double play.
A crowd of 44,815 comprised mostly of Mets supporters was stunned by a Halloween nightmare for their team which had been only 5 outs from pulling level in the World Series.
New York's Michael Conforto, a 22-year-old US leftfielder batting only 2-for-22 in the playoffs, blasted leadoff homers in the third and fifth innings to power the Mets to their 3-2 lead. Hitting only 1-for-7 over the first three games, he became the first rookie since Atlanta's Andruw Jones in 1996 with a multi-homer World Series contest.
The Mets, who have not won the World Series since 1986, also scored in the third when Wilmer Flores singled, took second on a wild pitch from Royals starter Chris Young and scored on sacrifice fly outs by pitcher Steven Matz and Curtis Granderson, the latter withstanding a video replay challenge that Flores left the bag before the catch - a reversal would have erased the run and ended the inning.
In the fifth, Perez doubled as onrushing Mets outfielder Cespedes accidentally kicked the ball away and allowed Perez to gain an extra base. Alex Gordon followed with a single to the right field wall that plated Perez and pulled the Royals within 2-1.
Pinch-hitter Kendrys Morales singled to advance Gordon but Alcides Escobar flew out to end the inning. Escobar had stretched his one-season playoff hit streak to a record-tying 14 games with a game-opening single.
Conforto blasted his second homer to begin the fifth inning off reliever Danny Duffy for a 3-1 Mets lead. But again the Royals responded.
Zobrist matched a major league playoff record with his eighth playoff double to start the sixth inning and Cain scored him with a single to pull Kansas City within 3-2.
Potential tying run Cain stole second base and reached third on a throwing error by 42-year-old Dominican reliever Bartolo Colon, who redeemed himself by striking out Perez to end the inning. – Rappler.com