Royals flushed as Giants take Game One

Reuters News
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Posted: Oct 22, 2014 12:00 AM

By Larry Fine

KANSAS CITY (Reuters) - The San Francisco Giants brought Kansas City Royals' perfect postseason to a shuddering end with an emphatic 7-1 win in the opening game of the World Series on Tuesday.

Giants ace Madison Bumgarner delivered a sparkling seven innings of work and Hunter Pence slammed a first inning two-run homer that pushed the Royals into an early hole they were unable to claw out of at their Kauffman stadium home.

"(Bumgarner) was on top of his game," Giants manager Bruce Bochy told reporters.

"He had his fastball going but his secondary pitches were good too.

"He's got great poise out there and he showed it tonight. He never gets flustered and keeps coming at you."

With the Royals back in the Fall Classic for the first time in 29 years, fans arrived early and filled the stadium ready to party and watch their team add to an unbeaten 8-0 playoff run.

But the Giants, bidding for a third title in five years, played party poopers by snapping an 11-game Royals postseason winning streak that stretched back to their 1985 World Series triumph.

Game Two of the best-of-seven series is set for Wednesday in Kansas City.

Making his first start since the American League championship series opener on Oct. 10, rusty Royals righty James Shield could not find his rhythm and labored through three plus innings in which he was pounded for five runs on seven hits.

"I don't think the layoff had anything to do with the ball game tonight," said Royals manager Ned Yost.

"I think what had a lot to do with the game tonight was Madison Bumgarner. He was fantastic."

Bumgarner, the Most Valuable Player in the National League championship series, was absolutely dominant.

The big lefty put himself into contention for similar MVP honors in the World Series by surrendering just one run on three hits, striking out five and walking one.

The Giants were quick out of the blocks in tagging a shaky Shields for five hits in the opening inning, including a line drive two-run shot from Pence and an RBI double from Pablo Sandoval to jump in front 3-0 and quieten the capacity crowd.

The Royals had the stadium rocking again in the bottom of the third when they loaded the bases but Bumgarner worked his way out of the jam and got Lorenzo Cain to ground out to end the threat.

Pence led off the fourth with a double and scored on a line drive single to center from Michael Morse that chased an ineffective Shields from the game.

Reliever Danny Duffy issued a bases loaded walk to Gregor Blanco to push across another Giants run as the NL champions went up 5-0.

The Giants added to their advantage in the seventh with Joe Panik and Sandoval driving in runs before Kansas City finally got on the scoreboard in the bottom of inning.

Salvador Perez took Bumgarner over the wall in leftfield, the solo shot ending the lefthander's Major League Baseball postseason record of 32.2 scoreless innings pitched on the road.

"He's special, he's just got that flair for the spectacular," said Pence. "He never makes it bigger than it is, he just gets out there and competes.

"We kind of booted one there (in the third inning) and he pitched his way out of it and that's what special pitchers do."

(Reporting by Larry Fine, writing by Steve Keating in Toronto. Editing Nick Mulvenney)