Monday, October 27, 2014

Orange and royal blue: the 2014 World Series

World Series baseball isn’t on TV tonight. The series has played through Game 5 and a break is in order.

We all need a rest, if you will, from the exertions of cheering our teams of choice. The San Francisco Giants and Kansas City Royals are swinging the big bats and what an October they’re giving us.

Major League baseball has a day off as the teams fly back to Kansas City to complete the series. It’s Game 6 tomorrow. It may take a seventh game before they’re through. 

San Francisco leads Kansas City by one game in a well matched series. It crackles with purpose and seethes with excitement. 

Al and I try to recall what we were doing with our evenings on the other side of the wholesale TV viewing which began with Game 1 in Kansas City last Tuesday. 

Tonight (I say this with a sigh of relief) we can dispense with the obligation of making popcorn. It’s a start toward eventual postseason normality. 

Popcorn has accompanied each game so far. Making popcorn for the games is the best fan support we could think of, and the crunching and munching help defray rattled nerves. 

America is being treated to super baseball. You want to root for both teams. The quality of play is outstanding. 

The players are quick and bold. They’re scrappy, brazen even, with their strategies when the ace pitchers of either side don't freeze them out. 

This is the year of dueling pitchers for sure. San Francisco’s ace Madison Bumgarner, 25 years old, had everyone in awe last night. 

Several games haven’t ended close in score. You wouldn’t have predicted this from some of the innings, which have been very tight competition. 

Each team has had innings of being held off again and again as the ball sails across home plate and there’s failure to connect, get on base or bring in a run. 

Then the other team is at bat. They’re similarly held in check by brilliant pitching and defense. These are the innings when nothing seems to happen except the slow fraying of your patience as you will your team to step up and act. 

The team who’s ahead in a game can't be complacent. A lead by the other team is a stolen base or crack of the bat away. Each team (as the other side is aware) is capable of instantaneously rewriting the script for the game. 

There are times I look over the ball park and can believe the players are in combat stance as in the jousting fields of old. These are men who, in fighting spirit, go back to medieval ancestors. 

They appear to be connecting with mighty warrior forebears in the steel they show as they face their opponents through sequences of innings that demand stamina and strength. 

If you’re not a baseball fan here’s the pitch to get on board. There’s no better moment than now. 

See for yourself what baseball excitement is about. You pick a good time. The 2014 World Series is sure to bring new interest to the sport through the sterling performance of both teams. 

Line up with the Giant fans and their waving orange towels, or shout yourself hoarse with the rabid Royals fan base. Root for both if you can’t decide, but take my advice and put some baseball fever into your fall mix. 

There’s a bunch of us on cue for tomorrow's ball to be thrown out. We’ll be ready for resumption of a baseball match that’s been giant in mastery and royal in class.

The 2014 World Series championship is still to be decided. It’s a guess which team will ultimately claim the baseball trophy. Both teams have been tested. Both are deserving. We stay tuned. 

Ro Giencke - October 27, 2014

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