ST. LOUIS (AP) – Mike Napoli is having a charmed postseason and a historic World Series.
After he was traded from the Angels to the Blue Jays to the Rangers within a week over the winter, Napoli wasn’t sure exactly how much he was wanted. He finally learned during the AL divisional series against Tampa Bay, when he stepped to the plate with the bases loaded against Rays ace James Shields.
The crowd started chanting his name: Nah-po-li! Nah-po-li!
“It was kind of crazy, doing it then,” Napoli said Wednesday. “It caught me off-guard. I was like, ‘Man, this probably isn’t the right time to be doing this,’ but I came through. It was pretty cool.”
Napoli has really come through in the World Series.
He’s already joined Mickey Mantle as the only players with four multi-RBI games, and his nine RBIs represents nearly half of the Rangers’ 19 runs. Only five other players — Mantle, Bobby Richardson, Yogi Berra, Sandy Alomar Jr. and Ted Kluszewski — drove in more in a World Series.
“I hear it. It’s hard not to hear it when 50,000 people are doing it,” Napoli said of people chanting his name. “Yeah, the first time they did it, it kind of caught me off-guard. But now I like it. It’s a cool thing.”
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