The Giants will attempt to even the World Series against the Royals with Ryan Vogelsong on the hill. San Francisco considered using their ace Madison Bumgarner instead of Vogelsong, their scheduled starter, but they ultimately gave him a vote of confidence. Kansas City will turn to Jason Vargas to take a commanding 3-1 lead in the series.
The Royals have won two games in a row since losing the series opener, and the relief trio of Kelvin Herrera, Wade Davis and Greg Holland has combined to allow one hit in seven scoreless innings. Holland has seven saves, tied with five others for most in a single postseason.
Alcides Escobar has been the catalyst for the Royals’ offense. He had two hits and scored twice last night and is 5-for-12 in the World Series while two key Kansas City players had their first hits of the series in last night’s win, as Alex Gordon (11 at-bats) recorded an RBI double and Eric Hosmer (10 at-bats) delivered a run-scoring single.
Pablo Sandoval was hitless in four at-bats to end his streak of reaching base in 25 straight postseason games, tied for third all-time with Orioles standout Boog Powell (1966-71) while Buster Posey is now just 2-for-13 in the series and still searching for his first home run of the postseason.
Jason Vargas (1-0, 2.38 ERA) vs. Ryan Vogelsong (0-0, 5.19 ERA)
Jason Vargas is pitching for the first time since October 15 and only the third time this postseason. He had a mechanical issue while enduring a winless four-start stretch in September during which he gave up 18 runs in 18 innings and he went 1-5 with a 5.89 ERA in his final seven starts of the regular season but he has gotten himself back on track by working extra bullpen and side sessions.
Vargas has pitched well in his first two postseason starts, allowing two runs in six innings in the American League Division Series opener against the Angels before getting the win when he gave up one run of 5 1/3 innings of the American League Championship Series clincher against the Orioles. Buster Posey is 2-for-7 with a home run against Vargas, while Michael Morse is 3-for-13 with a home run.
Ryan Vogelsong will make his second World Series start, having beaten the Tigers in 2012 when he pitched 5 2/3 scoreless innings. Vogelsong is 3-0 with a 2.16 ERA in his six career postseason starts, with the Giants going 6-0 in those games. Omar Infante is the only Kansas City regular with experience against Vogelsong, going 7-for-11 in their matchups, all since 2011.