After nearly a week without game action, the Kansas City Royals and San Francisco Giants will finally face off in Game 1 of the World Series on Tuesday night at Kauffman Stadium. The Royals are back in the Fall Classic for the first time since 1985, while the Giants are seeking their third World Series title in five years.
James Shields will toe the rubber for Kansas City in just the type of scenario that GM Dayton Moore envisioned when he traded for the right-hander (along with set-up man Wade Davis) two offseasons ago. Despite his "Big Game James" moniker, Shields hasn't quite lived up to his reputation as the team's staff ace in the playoffs thus far. The 32-year-old has posted a 5.63 ERA in three starts this October, striking out 15 batters and walking five in 16 innings while allowing three home runs. He did have a tremendous regular season for Kansas City, finishing with a 3.21 ERA in 227 innings pitched and the second-best strikeout-to-walk ratio of his career.
2014 World Series
The Giants will hand the ball to Madison Bumgarner, who has perhaps performed better than any other starter this postseason. The left-hander pitched eight innings in San Francisco's pennant-clinching victory in Game 5 of the NLCS and has gone at least seven frames in all four of his playoff outings. Bumgarner's exploits this October (1.42 ERA in 31⅔ innings) have only added to his stellar postseason record. The 25-year-old now has a career 2.67 ERA in the playoffs and was a key figure on San Francisco's prior two championship squads.
You can be sure Kauffman Stadium will be rocking with Kansas City fans hoping to see the Royals continue their remarkable unbeaten run this postseason. But as he enters his prime, Bumgarner will also have the chance to help pitch the Giants to yet another World Series victory.
Game Time: 8:07 p.m. ET
Radio: ESPN Radio (affiliate locator)
Streaming: MLB.tv World Series stream