Royals-Blue Jays ALCS looking like mirror image of 1985 ALCS
Striking coincidental similarities exist between then and now -- which means the Royals should be worried.
The Cubs have gotten most of the attention regarding "Back to the Future" on the occasion of the film's 30th anniversary. And why not? The first sequel had the Cubs beating "Miami" in a fictional World Series in an alternate 2015.
Overlooked until this point is the temporal connection that teams in the other league have with real-life 1985, namely the rematch of the Blue Jays and Royals meeting in the ALCS for a shot at the World Series. The Jays and Royals met in the '85 ALCS as well and so far... so far, the 2015 series looks like a mirror image of what happened 30 years ago.
Royals are still in a very good position. But this whole 1985-ALCS-In-Reverse thing is starting to freak me out.— Rany Jazayerli (@jazayerli) October 21, 2015
In the 1985 ACLS, the Blue Jays -- the George Bell, Jesse Barfield, Tony Fernandez, Dave Stieb, Ernie Whitt crew -- took a three-games-to-one lead on the Royals, but lost three straight to surrender a World Series berth to George Brett, Buddy Biancalana and Kansas City. Obviously, the 2015 ALCS isn't that far along; the Royals lead 3-2 after falling 7-1 in Game 5 on Wednesday, and the teams are heading back to Kansas City for Game 6 and 7 -- if necessary.
It's just odd how the first five games have gone. With the Royals ahead this time, it's kind of like the series is looking in a reflection with '85. So, if you entertain concepts such as conspiracy theories, odd coincidences that appear connected, karma, then this reply on the blog Bluebird Banter by Matt Gross might freak you out a little. Especially if you're rooting for the Royals:
Some of the results are more similar than others. The first two Game 1s, that's freaky, with the home team winning by five runs in each instance. And the Game 2 deal -- each winner scoring six after trailing 3-0 -- wow. Gross, self-described as a "baseball nut," says this is when he began to notice the similarities -- after Game 2.
The Game 3s aren't all that similar; yes, the 2015 Blue Jays "broke out" for 11 runs. But in 1985, the Royals had just as many hits in Game 2 as in Game 3, and only one more run. So that's a stretch. The Game 4s were really different, with the modern-day Royals pounding the Jays 14-2, and the 1985 Jays needing a rally in the ninth to beat the Royals 3-1. Hey, the Baseball Gods don't want to make it too obvious, right?
Things get back on track in the Game 5s, though. Danny Jackson of the Royals began the comeback by going the distance, striking out six, to beat the Jays in 1985. In the current day series, Marco Estrada was fantastic, pitching into the eighth against the Royals. Jackson, a lefty, and Estrada, a righty, also happen to be mirror images on the mound.
So what might happen in present-day Game 6 and/or 7? In '85, the Royals beat the Jays 5-3 behind Mark Gubicza, with an assist from Bud Black and Dan Quisenberry to close. In Game 7 in '85, Royals ace Bret Saberhagen didn't make it out of the fourth inning (he was hit with a batted ball), but Charlie Leibrandt rescued the Royals and Quisenberry finished off the Jays in a 6-2 victory against Stieb.
Let's see how much 2015 mirrors 1985 in Game 6 on Friday, and perhaps Game 7 on Saturday. If the Jays come back and win, it's going to be a little weird.
CBS Sports wink of the Eye: @pimpino on Twitter
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