The small-ball Royals have more extra-inning, postseason home runs than any team ever
In Major League Baseball's 2014 regular season, no team hit more home runs than the Orioles and no team stole more bases than the Royals.
The Royals held an early 4-0 lead over the Orioles, but rallies in the home halves of the fifth and sixth innings had Game 1 of the ALCS tied. As is now customary with basically every postseason game involving the Royals, fans were treated to free baseball.
Alex Gordon led off the top of the 10th with a home run and Mike Moustakas followed with a two-run shot soon thereafter, lifting the Royals to their fourth extra-inning win in five postseason games.
Late-inning heroics would be one thing, but the most entertaining part of the Royals story is the "how." While leading the league in stolen bases this season, the Royals were dead last in home runs. Manager Ned Yost has been doodling the word "bunt" in his Trapper Keeper all year long. In the AL Wild Card Game, they bunted five times and set an MLB record for most steals in a postseason game (seven different Royals stole a base.)
So, it should seem obvious that they're winning thanks to ... extra-inning homers?
Entering the 2014 postseason, the Royals had exactly one extra-inning home run on the year. In eight extra innings over five postseason games, the Royals have hit four home runs, more than any team in the history of Major League Baseball.
Playoff extra-inning home runs by the worst power-hitting team in the majors are the new market inefficiency.- Jonah Keri (@jonahkeri) October 11, 2014
Yeah, that's one way to put it.