Every year in the postseason, someone makes a legend for themselves and finds themselves amongst the postseason greats. In Baltimore and Kansas City, fans have not had the chance to see their team attempt to make that leap. But times have changed and now give the faithful of Camden Yards and Kauffman Stadium can rejoice once again to see baseball in October.
The road to the Championship was certainly a sight to see, The Orioles faced Detroit in the division sweeping the Tigers and the excellent pitching staff setting up the match with the Royals. The Royals have been riding one of the hottest months in baseball. After rallying back from a 5-2 deficit winning the first of their three extra-inning games in the postseason, the Royals bring their streak to the ALCS to make one of the more legendary series in the past years.
The Orioles have seen the improvement of their roster over the past four seasons the club was taken over by skipper Buck Showhalter. The 2-time Manager of Year restored the winning culture in the Charm City, bringing in 3 winning seasons season that including two trips to the playoffs, in 2012 and currently. Stringing from over a decade of witnessing the Yankees, Red Sox and even the Rays see brighter days coming out of the AL East, the O’s have now put themselves in a great position see the success of the past predecessors.
Similar story but the Royals have a true Cinderella story this postseason. Their drought of nearly 30 years of not seeing playoff actions is older than the average player on their roster. Under the leadership of Ned Yost, Kansas City has been using a fundamental brand of baseball; win the game one run at a time. The spirit and energy that the 2014 Royals have showcased from their wild card game to now sweeping the Angels, have put them back in the national spotlight after being the laughing stock of the MLB for years.
The two teams have went into 2014 playoffs with an aggressive mindset as the brought in the most runs at 1 and 2 respectively and also showcase some of the best pitching against teams with great power in the Tigers and Angels. This matchup is going to be one for the ages, as Buck Showhalter says “”Everybody is very capable. Everybody’s got strengths and weaknesses and we’re just excited and honored to be a part of it.”
With true determination and grit, each team has embodied the chip on their shoulder with so much to prove. The hunger from the Royals and Orioles should make this series, the most intriguing of this year’s pennant chase.