A ROYAL VICTORY
(P1) This year’s World Series featured two baseball teams that had waited a long time to win baseball’s biggest prize. The New York Mets haven’t won a World Series since 1986. The Kansas City Royals played in the 2014 series but lost to the San Francisco Giants. The Royals hadn’t won a World Series since 1985. But 30 years later, the Kansas City team is back ON TOP.
(P2) The Royals started out strong, winning the first two games of the series in their home stadium, in Missouri. Game 1 was five hours long and ran for 14 innings instead of the regular nine. In Game 2, Kansas City won a COMMANDING victory, with a score of 7–1.
(P3) Game 3 was played in New York City. Mets fans were nervous—only 11 teams in Major League Baseball history have come back to win after losing the first two games in the best-of-seven series. The Mets won that game 9–3.
(P4) With the Royals leading two games to one and the Mets enjoying a HOME-FIELD ADVANTAGE, both teams had MOMENTUM heading into Game 4. The Mets scored two early runs and led the game until the eighth inning. But in that inning, Mets second baseman Daniel Murphy made a mistake that likely cost his team the game. He reached for a GROUND BALL hit by the Royals’ Eric Hosmer. But Murphy missed, the ball rolled past him, and Ben Zobrist, another Royal, ran from second base to score a run. The Royals went on to win, 5–2.
(P5) Game 5, played on Sunday, November 1, in New York, featured several surprising and exciting moments. Once again, the Royals TRAILED the Mets early on. New York scored its first run in the first inning, while Kansas City didn’t score a single run until the top of the ninth inning. And in the same inning, Hosmer once again had a CRUCIAL moment. He was on third base when a teammate hit a ground ball. Taking a major risk, Hosmer SPRINTED toward home, hoping the Mets’ third baseman wouldn’t throw the ball home fast enough to get him out. His bet paid off, and his run tied the game at 2–2.
(P6) The tied score continued into the 12th inning. Then things changed: the Royals scored five runs in a single inning, CLINCHING a 7–2 victory and a World Series win. “I couldn’t have written a better SCRIPT” for the series, Ned Yost, the Royals’ manager, said.
(P7) The Royals returned to Kansas City as heroes. A parade will be held IN THEIR HONOR on November 3, followed by a party at Kansas City’s historic train station.
(P8) Meanwhile, disappointed Mets fans are left hoping 2016 will be their big year. After all, like the Royals, they’ve waited three decades for a World Series win, too.
If you found the passage difficult to read or had problems understanding specific words or idiomatic expressions, please discuss them with your tutor. The following discussion questions should be answered in your own words and with your own arguments.
- Briefly summarize the content of the article in your own words.
- Which major sporting event do you pay the most attention to: World Series, Super Bowl, World Cup, or Olympics?
- Do you think baseball is too slow, or just the right speed?
- Why is it an advantage for a team to play in its own city and stadium?
- Why do cities GO WILD when their team wins?
EXPRESSIONS TO PRACTICE:
What do the following expressions mean? Practice using each expression in a sentence; extra points if you can use it in conversation.
- On top
- Home-field advantage
- Ground ball
- In their honor
- Go wild