Royals Are Kings: Kansas City Wins First World Series In 30 Years
ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:
It took 12 innings last night for the Kansas City Royals to beat the New York Mets and win the World Series 4 games to 1. As Frank Morris of Member Station KCUR reports, Kansas City is celebrating a victory that caps a long turnaround for both the team and the town.
FRANK MORRIS, BYLINE: Kansas City's now a baseball town. Almost everyone was watching the game last night. Kate McDonald had it on in her front yard for all the neighbors and, really, anybody else.
KATE MCDONALD: You get the community feeling out here. And we have food and alcohol and fire.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN #1: Fireworks.
MCDONALD: And our - none of our TV rooms are big enough to hold all of us.
MORRIS: They're not big enough to hold the changing spirit of the city either.
EMILY RIEGEL: Like, yeah. Kansas City is excited to be Kansas City right now.
MORRIS: Emily Riegel is an avid Kansas University fan. She's sitting next to Terri Daly, who's wrapped in a Missouri University blanket. Normally these two teams are bitter rivals, but Daly says the Royals currently trump just about everything.
TERRI DALY: And I just feel like there's kind of a kindness in the city that you feel because of that, that they are bringing us together.
MORRIS: On the other side of town in working-class Kansas City, Kan., people seemed just as unified and eager to celebrate the first World Series win in 30 years.
MORRIS: Kansas citizens are still celebrating today, of course, and places like this bootleg T-shirt stand are hopping.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: Congratulations, Royals.
MORRIS: Kenneth Speese is here stocking up on shirts and says it's not just the win. It's how the Royals won, coming from behind again and again, scrapping for everything.
KENNETH SPEESE: It was from the heart, Man, from the heart. Nobody in Kansas City tore up anything. Nobody got shot. You know, we all family, Man.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN #2: How many?
UNIDENTIFIED MAN #2: Two.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN #2: All right - just a few minutes.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN #2: Thank you.
MORRIS: You can see that all over two today, including this small empanada shop where the Royals' World Series most valuable player eats.
YVAN DUIN: Yeah, Salvador Parez is one of the - come almost every day to, you know, eat here.
ALEXANDRO HERNANDEZ: And I think we were kind of hoping he will be here right now (laughter). I don't know.
MORRIS: Yvan Duin and Anna Hernandez plan to keep celebrating.
DUIN: So yeah, yeah. We have a party here, party there. And, well, tomorrow, we're going to have a big, huge party.
MORRIS: The parade is tomorrow, and lots of people are looking forward to that. But really, civic pride has been swelling here for years now. The Royals are just the latest focal point. Kansas City's riding pretty high these days and looking to turn this good baseball vibe into something that lasts longer than the World Series parade. For NPR News, I'm Frank Morris in Kansas City. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.