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Short series, classic finishes, and an October weekend without baseball

SAN FRANCISCO — A decade from now, even a year from now, this National League Championship Series may seem like a blowout. The San Francisco Giants, in the midst of a five-year run that can be characterized as either impressive or unlikely, put away the St. Louis Cardinals in five games. Busch Stadium waited to welcome all those fans in red this weekend, the Cardinals still alive. Alas, it will sit quiet and empty.

Gordon’s homer in 10th helps Royals top O’s, 8-6

BALTIMORE — The baseball tore a hole through rain and the wind and the mid-October chill before it splashed into a stunned sea of orange. In the lower bowl of Camden Yards, a rowdy pocket of Kansas City Royals fans leapt to their feet. All around them sat Baltimore Orioles fans stunned by the 10th inning feat of Alex Gordon and his game-winning homer in an 8-6 victory on the first night of the American League Championship Series.

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M’s trounced by Angels, 8-1

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Perhaps words like catastrophe and disaster are a bit much in describing all that went wrong on Monday night at Angels Stadium and all that has gone awry in the last eight games.