Rain had started to fall at Kauffman Stadium as the echoing roars finally faded into the night. Eric Hosmer popped out of the dugout one last time, looked to the sky and let it soak in.
It had been 29 years since the Royals played a post-season game — nearly three decades spent mostly as a laughingstock. But on Tuesday night, already drenched in victory champagne, the young first baseman felt as if the whole world had watched their coming-out party.
“This team showed a lot of character tonight,” Hosmer said. “We weren’t going to quit.”
Salvador Perez singled home the winning run with two outs in the 12th inning, capping two late comebacks that gave Kansas City a thrilling 9-8 victory over the Oakland Athletics in the American League wild-card game. (Photos: Ed Zurga/Getty Images, Jeff Roberson/The Associated Press, Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
'You can’t even dream this stuff up': Derek Jeter had a hard time stepping into the batter’s box in the bottom of the ninth inning.
Overwhelmed by the outpouring of love from the fans over the past two weeks and all the final moments at home in a 20-season career, the always cool captain of the Yankees was about to break down.
“I almost started crying driving here today,” Jeter said Thursday night after New York’s 6-5 win over Baltimore. “I think I’ve done a pretty good job of controlling my emotions throughout the course of my career. … Today I wasn’t able to do it.”
What he was able to do was give New York one more amazing moment in a career full of them, driving in the winning run in the ninth with — what else? — an opposite-field single to right field.
Even though he was playing the first game of his career at Yankee Stadium with the team eliminated from the playoff race, Jeter leaped high with both arms raised after touching first base and was embraced by his teammates.
The 14-time All-Star then lingered on the field, seemingly not wanting to give up the only job he ever hoped to have — shortstop for the New York Yankees. (Photos: Elsa/Getty Images, Al Bello/Getty Images, Bill Kostroun/The Associated Pres, Julie Jacobson/The Associated Press)
Baltimore Ravens fans exchanged their jerseys of former running back Ray Rice of the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium on September 19, 2014 in Baltimore, Maryland. Following a video that surfaced of Ray Rice knocking his then fiancee Janay Rice unconscious in an New Jersey Casino elevator, the Baltimore Ravens cut Rice and the NFL suspended him indefinitely. The Baltimore Ravens offered fans an option for a free exchange of their Ray Rice uniforms for another Ravens player. (Photos: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)