Giants take 3-2 Series lead with 5-0 win over Royals


Oct 26, 2014; San Francisco, CA, USA; Kansas City Royals manager

Ned Yost

(right) makes a lineup change with umpire Hunter Wendelstedt (21) in the 7th inning during game five of the 2014 World Series against the San Francisco Giants at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

If the Kansas City Royals’ season ends with four losses to the San Francisco Giants, and two of those losses are to the world’s greatest pitcher – Madison Bumgarner (2-0, 0.56) – then you tip your hat to the champions.

But after Bumgarner, who once gave his wife a cow for her birthday, tossed the rawhide past the Royals all night in hurling a 5-0 complete game shutout, the Royals can look forward to not having to see him again.

And, since we’re saying our goodbyes, we should tip our hat and bid adieu to James Shields (0-2, 7.00) who took the loss tonight and, no doubt, pitched his last game in a Royals’ uniform.

As for the game, the Royals mustered only four hits off Bumgarner all night. If the Giants ever felt threatened, it never showed. Nor should it have.

On the other end, the Giants held a 2-0 lead through seven innings. Faint hope of perhaps a bloop and blast was always a possibility for the Royals. That is, until two of the vaunted three of the Royals’ bullpen faltered and the lead stretched.

Kelvin Herrera gave up two runs in one inning, and Wade Davis was rocked by a blast off the center field wall. He gave up two hits, one run, none earned.

As predictable as Bumgarner was, the Royals bullpen continued to be anything but predictable.

Manager Ned Yost, inexplicably, managed a double switch replacing Omar Infante with Jason Nix, which allowed Nix to be the second batter in the eighth inning. In a similarly awkward move, Yost chose to put Billy Butler in to pinch hit for Jarrod Dyson – to lead off the eighth. That’s the same Nix who had eight total at-bats for the Royals all year. And that’s the same Butler who should have been inserted in a position to knock in a run.

Of course, Ned didn’t lose the game. The players didn’t lose the game. Bumgarner won the game. It’s as simple as that.

Time to move on. All is forgotten. And Kansas City can leave their losses in San Francisco, and take their hearts back to Kauffman Stadium. All that matters is one game. Tuesday night.

Yordano Ventura (0-0, 3.38) will face Jake Peavy (0-1, 7.20). You have to like the Royals’ chances Tuesday night against a pitcher that displayed little mystery in Game 2. And, if the Royals win Game 6 to tie the Series at three games apiece, then you have to figure it will be the Giants who are in a must-win situation.

The Royals, by then, will be playing with house money against a team that won the World Series in 2010 and 2012.

NOTABLES: Eric Hosmer had one hit off Bumgarner; No other lefty in the lineup had a hit. Billy Butler made his first appearance in San Francisco, taking a called third strike in his pinch hit appearance. Alex Gordon is hitting .100 in the World Series.

NEXT: Jake Peavy (0-1, 7.20) vs. Yordano Ventura (0-0, 3.38), Tuesday, 7:00 p.m., Kauffman Stadium.