On Friday night at Citi Field, David Wright‘s bat woke up. Then the rest of the New York Mets offense stirred from its slumber. And just like that, we have ourselves a World Series.

Yes, the Kansas City Royals still hold a 2-1 edge in the best-of-seven Fall Classic. But after cruising to a 9-3 victory in Game 3 behind a strong six-inning start from Noah Syndergaard and, most essentially, a barrage of knocks, the Amazins are alive and kicking.

A lineup that collected just one extra-base hit in Games 1 and 2 in Kansas City and looked downright moribund in the process erupted for 12 hits, including a pair of home runs.

The first and biggest blast came in the bottom of the first, when Wright dug in for his first-ever Fall Classic at-bat in front of the hometown faithful and promptly launched a crackling Yordano Ventura fastball to deep left field.

The two-run bomb was the first Wright has hit since Sept. 26. In the sixth, he singled with the bases loaded to drive in another pair of runs. That more than doubled his RBI total for the 2015 postseason:

Wright wasn’t the only hitter who left his mark on Game 3, and we’ll get to that in a moment. First, though, let’s pause to appreciate what the guy they call the Captain accomplished on a chilly evening in Queens and how unlikely it was.

Oh, sure, Wright is a seven-time All-Star, the longest-tenured Met and still arguably the face of the franchise.

But he also played in just 38 regular-season games after landing on the disabled list with a strained hamstring in April, and then he was diagnosed with spinal stenosis, which ended up being about as bad as it sounds.

The mere fact the 32-year-old third baseman returned to the everyday lineup down the stretch and into October was a symbolic boost for New York.

Entering play Friday, however, Wright had done little at the plate. He was just 7-for-41 with 14 strikeouts in the postseason and looked frequently overmatched.

“I’ve been better,” Wright said during the National League Championship Series, per Dan Martin of the New York Post. “When you’re not feeling great at the plate, you try to work some walks and do other things in the game well. Hopefully the hits come and I can join in offensively.”

On Friday, he did more than join. He led, and others followed.

Like Curtis Granderson, who launched a two-run dinger of his own into the right-field corner in the bottom of the third, putting the Mets back up 4-3. They would tack on five more runs, with Michael Conforto and Juan Uribe (returning from an extended injury absence) chipping in RBI base hits and Yoenis Cespedes notching a sac fly.

Even Syndergaard got in on the offensive act, rapping out a single ahead of Granderson’s big fly.

The Royals’ arms mostly baffled the Mets in Missouri. Now, in the Big Apple, the worm has turned.

“That pitching staff over there…makes it difficult for you to get things going,” Granderson told Fox’s Erin Andrews immediately after Game 3. “[We] tried to put pressure on them, get good at-bats, take it one pitch at a time. No matter what you’re doing up there in that batter’s box, you can’t win the game on [one] swing.”

Technically you can; that’s what walk-offs are for. But his point is taken. The Mets needed a balanced attack and to prove the Royals—whose insane ability to put wood on the ball was highlighted by Bleacher Report’s Scott Miller—aren’t the only swingers in this series.

In fact, New York swiped a page from Kansas City’s playbook, as the New York Post‘s Joel Sherman noted mid-game:

Mostly, the Mets humbled a Royals squad that was looking more and more like an unstoppable force. They exposed Ventura, who had electric stuff at times but couldn’t make it out of the fourth inning.

Looking ahead to Game 4, they’ll face right-hander Chris Young, who threw 53 pitches in relief in Game 1 on Tuesday. So they’ll have another chance, in theory, to chase K.C.’s starter early and get to the Royals’ middle-relief arms, who also faltered Friday.

Of course, this being the postseason, things can spin on a dime. Just because the Mets were scary good Friday doesn’t mean they’ll be the same on Halloween and beyond. Wright’s outburst might have been a one-time deal rather than the beginning of a trend. Kansas City has proved it can shift quickly and relentlessly into shutdown mode.

But facts are facts. The Mets nearly doubled their run total from the first two contests in Game 3. They more than doubled their tally of extra-base hits. And they did it behind an inspirational performance from a beloved veteran and clubhouse leader.

Suffice it to say, New York is awake—and we have ourselves a series.


All statistics current as of Oct. 30 and courtesy of MLB.com unless otherwise noted.

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