It’s tiresome to read and hear many blaming Lucas Duda, Yoenis Cespedes and Daniel Murphy for the Mets losing the Series. But, as is the case for all clubs that lose a best of seven match, every player had a part in New York’s failed attempt to win their first World Series since 1986.
Yes, the misplays by Duda and Murphy and the lack of judgment on the base paths by Cespedes had a hand in the Mets losing, but the Royals dominated the Series in the late innings and New York could not come through in many scoring, defensive and pitching situations. That’s the way it is when you’re on the other side of victory.
The Mets had the lead in all five games of the Series, but because of the relentless drive of the Royals, Kansas City came through in key situations that led to their victories.
So let’s just congratulate the Royals on being a great team all year and in the end, being crowned the best team in Major League Baseball.
No more whining that an error gave the Royals a victory. Fans and media continue, to this day, to cast a shadow over Bill Buckner for a misplay in Game 6 of the 1986 World Series win by the Mets. But they are quick to forget Boston had poor pitching in that fateful game and also had a three-run lead in Game 7 that they could not hold on to that led to their losing the seven-game Fall Classic.
Buckner held his head high and has been a class act. Years ago, when working on a story about players who had only one All-Star game at-bat, I wanted to bring my interview total to 20 players and I needed one more. So I reached out to six more players hoping to make contact and interview at least one of them. Among those six, only Buckner responded and he was very good with his recollection of the event I was asking about.
My point is that the one misplay on baseball’s biggest stage was not the reason behind the Red Sox losing the 1986 World Series, and it certainly is not what defines Bill Buckner as a player—he was an outstanding major leaguer—or a person.
I hope the same can be said about Duda, Murphy and Cespedes in years to come. They are not the sole reason the Mets lost. They, like the other 22 men on the roster, lost the 2015 World Series as a team to the better Kansas City Royals.
The Royals were non-stop in their aggressive pursuit of being crowned champions. They never quit. They united together as a team to put fun in watching them outduel their opponents. Kansas City pitched, hit, ran the bases, fielded the ball and overcame adversity to win. That is what champions do, and they did it in exciting fashion.