What else is there to say other then that the Kansas City Royals put together a game that will live in infamy in the heartland of America. A game that was played into October if there wasn't any other way, and the drama that opened those October sky's provided the drama looking to be written in the greatest month sports has to provide.
The blue rally towels were waving, the crowd sounded nervous but antsy. They were ready when the Royals were ready to strike. But it wasn't the Royals that struck first it was Brandon Moss who brought the thunder to the park.
A 2-run homerun by Brandon Moss who hadn't homered in 2 weeks, provided the spark that the Oakland A's needed to jump on the early excitement that the Royal fans were anticipating to pounce on. Well instead, Brandon Moss became the party pooper.
But the Royals came back to chip away at the deficit, and ultimately took the lead as Eric Hosmer hit a clutch 2 out hit to help the Royals take the lead at 3-2 at the end of the 3rd inning.
After that offensive output early on, both John Lester and James Shields settled down for a couple innings to let the fire churn a little bit. Then came the 6th inning. Known as the inning that got away from the Royals.
Shields got pulled early with two men on base, then Brandon Moss decided to mash another pitch over the centerfield wall making it 5-3 Oakland which opened the flood gate and allowing a couple more 2 out runs making it 7-3 going into the bottom of the 6th inning where it looked like the Royals only had 12 outs left in their season against a zoned out John Lester, which spells a automatic W where Lester is 85-1 in his career when being handed a 3+ run lead. Good Luck.
Remember, this the playoffs, nothing is ever set and stone, and the Royals were ready to remind the world of how the Oakland A's got to this point.
Lester went 1-2-3 in the 6th & 7th, only allowing 6 more outs in the season for Kansas City heading into the bottom of the 8th, where the magic ensued.
Lester left the ball game with men on base again, and the Royals decided to literally steal the show as they stole base after base (ultimately 7 altogether) and grinding their way to getting within 1 run heading into the 9th.
Down 7-6 in the bottom of the 9th, 1 out, and a runner getting to third, Nori Aoki stepped up and hit a ball far enough easily tying the game, ultimately getting the Royals to extra inning baseball.
The next couple innings both teams run stagnant, but then came the 12th inning.
Top of the 12th, the A's score a run making it 8-7, and again testing the might of the Royals. Similar as to how A's had their entire season up until the dog days of August, they were up and they looked like they would just keep cruising to that victory like they did in the first half of the season. But much like the second half of the season, the second half of the 12th inning proved to be the nail in the coffin.
Both Johnny Gomes and Nick Fuld collided in the outfield, providing Eric Hosmer to triple with only one out in the inning. Then Christian Colon hit a chopper so high, that the likes of David Ortiz could run it out and Eric Hosmer tied the game. Colon made it to 2nd on a dropped pitchout, and the man who was up to bat hadn't had a hit all game. He was 0 for 5, and he hit a ball that looked about 3 feet off the plate down the leftfield line, where Josh Donaldson laid for what seemed like forever watching his season trickle down the line and hearing footsteps of all the teams that caught them down the stretch of the regular season as Christian Colon ran home and won the game 9-8 for the Kansas City Royals in the 2014 AL Wildcard Game.
The culmination of an entire season wrapped up into one game. From the top of the 6th inning on till the very final hit in the bottom of the 12th. The Oakland A's went from the best team profoundly in the game midway through the 2014 season to one of the more mediocre teams to finish the season who barely got into the final playoff slot of the postseason. This game finally ended that terrible 2 month drought that the Athletics had been feeling similar to the water drought in California.
It just dried up late, and never became replenished! On to the NL Wild Card Game Wednesday Night!!!