New York Mets’ captain David Wright, who has been out most of the season with lumbar spinal stenosis, was the true hero during the Game 3 of the 2015 World Series as the Mets defeated the Kansas City Royals by the score of 9-3. He contributed four RBI to the Mets’ nine total runs and it was great for everyone to see him looking like his old self. It was Wrights second career postseason home run and first ever in the World Series.
The crowd at Citi Field was electric with constant chants of “Lets Go Mets” and when Daniel Murphy was up “Mur-phy, Mur-phy” among other lively exclamations. Maybe the Mets just needed to be at home to give them a little confidence.
It wasn’t as though they played perfectly however. Starter Noah Syndergaard was a bit wild starting out, allowing the Royals to get on the board first after giving up a double to Ben Zobrist, who then ended up scoring on a fielder’s choice by Eric Hosmer who dribbled the ball to first baseman Lucas Duda who threw to shortstop Wilmer Flores to get Lorenzo Cain out at second. With two outs Syndergaard was able to get out of the inning by retiring Mike Moustakas. However, the 23-year-old pitcher’s pitch count was already beginning to rise.
In the bottom of the first with Curtis Granderson on base and Wright at the plate, Wright launched a two-run shot into left center field for two of his four RBI on the night. The Royals went on to score two more runs in the top of the second making the score 3-2, one on a wild pitch by Syndergaard.
Manager Terry Collins already had left-hander Jon Niese warming up in the bullpen at this point, assuming that this would not be Syndergaard’s best outing. He was wrong, however, and Syndergaard settled down.
The Mets came back with some runs of their own the bottom of the third, this time on a Curtis Granderson line drive homer to right off of Royals’ starter Yordano Ventura. That scored Syndergaard who had singled and gotten to first, along with Granderson, making the score 4-3.
According to the FOX Sports announcers it was the first time in the 111 year history of the World Series that there have been three lead changes in the first three innings of the game.
Once Syndergaard settled down however he was his usual masterful self. He struck out five batters over the next four innings and did not allow a Royals’ base runner until there were two outs in the top of the sixth inning. He then allowed a single and a couple of walks pushing his pitch count to 103 and loading the bases. On his 104th pitch he used his slider to get Alex Rios to ground out ending the inning as well as Syndergaard’s night.
In the bottom half of the inning the Mets decided it was time to break this game wide open. Franklin Morales was now on the mound for Kansas City. He allowed a single to Juan Lagares and then hit Wilmer Flores with a pitch. With two on and one out Juan Uribe plated Lagares with a single.
Granderson reached on a fielder’s choice to load the bases. Royals’ manager Ned Yost pulled Morales from the game but each of the base runners were his responsibility. Yost brought in Kelvin Herrera to face David Wright who drilled a two-run single to center field, making the score 8-3 in favor of New York.
Herrera walked Murphy to load the bases for Yoenis Cespedes who hit a sacrifice fly to left scoring the Mets’ ninth and final run of the evening. The remainder of the game went on without incident besides a couple of pitching changes but what really mattered is that Game 3 put the Mets right back into this race for the Championship.
The Royals still lead the series 2-1 but if the Mets perform again the way they did Friday night for their hometown crowd, this series could go a full seven games. Now that is something I would love to see.
Game four starters are the old vs. the young. Chris Young will pitch for the second time in this series, he pitched three pretty much perfect innings of relief in Game one and the 36-year-old will still start Game 4. As for the Mets they have 24-year-old rookie Steven Matz taking the mound Saturday at Citi Field.
It’s been an exciting series thus far, we can only hope for more!