A quarter of a century ago, I experienced a year of pure magic.

A quarter of a century ago, I experienced a year of pure magic.

It was 1985.

My oldest son, Zach, was born, and the Kansas City Royals won their lone world championship.

For fans who are too young to remember the golden era of the Royals, plan on being at Kauffman Stadium at 1 p.m. Saturday.

They can watch a group of former Royal World Series champions will take on members of the St. Louis Cardinals team they edged 4-3 in an I-70 Series for the ages in a softball game that precedes the Royals matchup against the visiting Colorado Rockies.

I’m often asked about the most memorable events I’ve covered over the past 28 years at The Examiner, and nothing comes close to that World Series.

Like the American League Championship Series, when the Royals trailed the Toronto Blue Jays three games to one, Whitey Herzog’s Cardinals held a commanding 3-1 lead over the boys in blue.

But I never sensed any panic, just gritty determination.

Following the third loss of the series, designated hitter Hal McRae sat in front of his locker in the visitor’s clubhouse at old Busch Stadium and joked, “We got those SOBs right where we want them.”

A few lockers over, second-year pitcher Mark Gubicza said, “It’s time to climb on George’s (Brett) back and have him carry us to a championship.”

I wonder if either of those Royals Hall of Famers knew how prophetic their comments would become.

The Royals won the next game at Busch Stadium, sending the series back to the rabid fans at Royals Stadium.

Dane Iorg, a former Cardinal reserve, collected the biggest hit in the history of the team when he drove home two runs in the bottom of the ninth inning to give the Royals a 2-1 victory.

“After that win,” Brett said, “they didn’t even need to play Game 7. Everyone in our clubhouse knew we were going to win it.”

With Cy Young Award winner and World Series MVP Bret Saberhagen on the mound, the Royals embarrassed the Cardinals 11-0 to claim what I thought would be the first of many world titles.

They had a great young staff with Saberhagen, Gubicza, Danny Jackson and Buddy Black; Dan Quisenberry was the best reliever in baseball; and Brett, Frank White and Willie Wilson were perennial all-stars.

“I’d like to get a ring for every finger,” said Saberhagen, who won a Comeback Player of the Year Award and his second Cy Young Award over a five-year span.

The Royals didn’t claim another championship – and they have not been back to the playoffs since that memorable season.

It’s hard for me to watch the playoffs and World Series today, because over a 10-year span, I was living it. The Royals won their first division title in 1976, and for a decade, they were the model team in baseball.

Then, salaries got out of hand, the rich got richer and the Royals became the division doormat.

At least one game a year, when the real Royals come back to town, I can relive the memories that are as vivid as if they only happened yesterday.