ESPN published an oral history of Alex Gordon not trying to score on a play where he would have been out by 30 feet, and let's all agree to just never talk about it again, okay? Every baseball person agrees he would have been out, the Kansas City Star re-enacted it with clear results, and please just drop it, media. Let it go. The win never bothered me anyway.
Proponents of sending Gordon argue that it would have been a Great Baseball Moment, and the thing is, they're wrong. It would have been a famous moment, certainly, in that Babe-Ruth-getting-caught-stealing-to-end-a-World-Series kinda way, but worse, because the Royals' third base coach doesn't get as much leeway on this, since there have been no seasons where he hit more home runs than any team in the American League. Maybe I should research that claim before I write it. Seems pretty iffy.
And no fanbase would have been left more satisfied with that ending than the one we got. The World Series would not have been remembered as a battle between evenly matched teams, but instead as the "Why the hell did they send Gordon?" Series. Giants fans would have to deal with implied credit being taken away, because Jesus, man, no team that would send a runner there could deserve to win a championship, so it's like they won by default. Royals fans would have had to deal with a lack of respect for the baseball acumen of their coaching staff and front office, a position with which they certainly have very little experience. And national fans would have been denied a budding superstar at the top of his game having to hold off one last charge from a desperate home team.
And, really, that last at-bat was extremely dramatic. Everything came down to all the marbles being on the line, and the tension in that AB is what makes baseball great. Could Bumgarner continue his historic dominance for one more batter, or would fatigue and sudden momentum and Salvador Perez's clutchness carry the day? The high fastball strategy seemed to work, but then Perez laid off a couple, and maybe Bumgarner was going to have to drop the pitch by a few inches, and what if those inches were enough for Perez to hit it on the sweet spot? What if, what if, what if?
The thing about that at-bat happening is that there were a thousand possibilities. Maybe Bumgarner hits him. Maybe there's a wild pitch. Maybe there's a passed ball, but it doesn't get THAT far away. Maybe Perez reaches on an error. Maybe he bunts it. Maybe he hits the ball to shallow left-center field, which was apparently a winning strategy. But if they send Gordon, there's only one maybe, and it's more of a "But if the left half of the stadium all breathe in, and the right half all breathe out, maybe...", which isn't a very interesting situation at all.
In conclusion, he'd have been out, this controversy is dumb, and you're welcome for not writing about Pablo Sandoval.