Oct 29, 2014; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Royals former pitcher Bret Saberhagen throws out the ceremonial first pitch before game seven of the 2014 World Series against the San Francisco Giants at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports
3. 1985 World Series, Game 3
Bret Saberhagen: 9.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 H, 1 BB, 8 K
Game Score: 78
Game Result: Royals 6, Cardinals 1
The 1985 Kansas City Royals were a team built around a salty core with a lot of playoff experience, along with a horde of kid pitchers. Thus, when the 91-71 KC Royals found themselves in trouble in both the ALCS and the World Series, they didn’t panic. Instead, they played their best.
So when the Kansas City Royals dropped the first two games of the World Series at home, they joked that they “had ’em right where we want them.” Such bravado couldn’t be dismissed after the team had overcome a three games to one deficit in Toronto, and with their 21-year-old ace, Bret Saberhagen, on the mound in Game 3.
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Saberhagen showed why he deserved the AL Cy Young Award.
Bret Saberhagen and St. Louis 21-game winner Joaquin Andujar (21-12, 3.40 ERA) traded zeros through the first three innings. The Royals broke through with two runs in the fourth and fifth innings, highlighted by left fielder Lonnie Smith’s two-run double and second baseman Frank White’s two-run home run.
That was all the help that Bret Saberhagen needed.
The Cardinals strung together three consecutive singles against Saberhagen in the sixth inning, to cut the KC Royals lead to 4-1. The Kansas City Royals responded by adding two more runs in top of the seventh. Saberhagen retired the final 11 Cardinals in a row to finish out a 6-1 victory.
The game was pretty much a must win situation. At the time, no team had ever rallied down three games to none to take a seven-game series (a feat achieved by the 2004 Red Sox against the New York Yankees in the ALCS).
Next: 1985 World Series, Game 7