© 2022 Kansas City Public Radio
NPR in Kansas City
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Kansas City Royals Headed To World Series

Courtesy Kathleen Kunkler

Sweeping away 29 years of heartbreak and bringing home an American League pennant to a rejoicing city, the Kansas City Royals clinched a trip Wednesday to the World Series.

Final score after a fast fall game under clear royal blue skies: Kansas City 2, Baltimore 1.

Screaming fans at Kauffman Stadium, on their feet for the ninth inning, counted down the outs until their beloved Royals were in the series.

"Three. More. Outs ... Two ... Strike out! ... One. More. Out ... Sweep! Sweep!"

Fans kissed and cried, waved brooms and signs that said “We believe!” Fans who didn’t get to go to the game huddled around office TVs or skipped out early to line up around the block at area bars.

Credit Cody Newill / KCUR
Cheers erupt at Kelly's Westport Inn as the Royals clinch the American League championship to go to the World Series.

After the ALCS ceremony, in which Lorenzo Cain was named MVP, 40,000 people belted out the big hair ballad "Don't Stop Believin'," getting goosebumps from the sunset's chill and the moment.

It was a first for those who didn’t get to witness the World Series win of 1985.

“Bring on the kool-aid and cookies. I am ready to party like it is 1985,” Charlotte Naylor wrote on Twitter.

And it was a satisfying second time around for those who witnessed the last World Series win in 1985.

"This is for all the years we couldn't give tickets away!" tweeted a trio of fans from a tailgate party in the parking lot.

“Winning restored,” said the T-Shirts and hoodies already on sale before the game was even over.

Kauffman Stadium was bathed in blue, with fans standing for most of the game and helping #Royals and #TakeTheCrown hashtags trend on Twitter.

Credit Suzanne Hogan / KCUR
Tate Scanlon, John Greene, Libby Scanlon, Siovhan Bradley and Beau Scanlon celebrate the Royals' win at the fountain at Meyer Boulevard and Ward Parkway.

Missouri Sen. Jolie Justus, a Kansas City Democrat, tweeted that she canceled her law school class for students born after 1985.

“Picked up a couple of votes w/that move,” she tweeted.

To say the Royals’ postseason success is unexpected is an understatement. It comes after a decade of futility that featured seven seasons with more than 90 losses. Few experts expected the team to contend for the playoffs and almost none imagined them in the World Series.

For years, Royals General Manager Dayton Moore preached patience as the team rebuilt its major league roster after trading established stars like Johnny Damon, Carlos Beltran and Zach Greinke for prospective talent. Years later, just as many fans had given up hope, the 2014 team finally delivered.

Next stop: the Royals will host Game One of the World Series on Tuesday against either the San Francisco Giants or the St. Louis Cardinals.

Check out the Royals' big win in 140 characters or less.

KCUR serves the Kansas City region with breaking news and powerful storytelling.
Your donation helps make non-profit journalism available for everyone.