The Mets were leading the Kansas City Royals, 4-3, with one out and none on in the bottom of the ninth inning in Game 1 of the 2015 World Series. They were about to secure the win, guaranteeing themselves at least a split before returning to Citi Field for Game 3. And then it happened.
Speaking this week on The Metrospective podcast with Tim Britton and Pete McCarthy, former Mets GM Sandy Alderson lamented the Game 1 loss and Familia's quick pitch.
"I look at Game 1 in 2015. We gave up an inside-the-park home run to the first hitter, which really shouldn't have happened. And then we get to the ninth inning and give up a lead on a quick-pitch, which we sort of counseled Familia against for a long time. ... when you quick-pitch and always throw a fastball, that's something different."
After falling in Game 1, the Mets lost a lopsided Game 2 before blowing out the Royals in Game 3. They had late leads in Game 4 and Game 5, but squandered both. Instead of potentially winning the series in five games, they lost it in five.
"I think, generally speaking, Game 1 is the most important game of a series," Alderson explained. "It doesn't have to dictate the rest of the series. In a short series like that, going up the first game -- especially on the road -- makes a huge difference. Not just in the numbers and the probabilities, but in the confidence.
"The first game is important. Just the way things went, I really feel if we had won the first game that we would've won it. Anyway, didn't happen."