The KC Royals swept their day-night doubleheader over visiting Tampa Bay. The Royals walked off in grand fashion, winning Game 1, 9-5.
Closer Greg Holland allowed the Rays to tie the game in the top of the ninth on a wild pitch. The inning started with a triple and Holland also walked two.
Paulo Orlando stepped to the plate with the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth against All-Star Brad Boxberger with one out. He hit the 1-0 pitch into the left field bullpen for his first career grand slam and his first career walk off hit.
Alex Gordon hit a solo home run off Matt Moore in the fourth, after being hit on the wrist in the prior at-bat. It was one of his three hits.
Third baseman Cheslor Cuthbert had to wait a day to make his Major League debut. He singled in the bottom of the third against Moore. He also singled in the second game.
The Royals won the second game, 7-1.
The win came with starter Edinson Volquez struggling through five innings. Though he threw 101 pitches, he only allowed one run. That run came when John Jaso led off the game with a homer.
After Volquez, the only base runner against the Royals bullpen was a walk issued by Brandon Finnegan (1.1IP). Luke Hochevar and Ryan Madson pitched the final 2.1 innings. Madson recorded three outs on just nine pitches.
The top two in the Royals order, Alcides Escobar and Gordon went a combined 6-for-9 with two runs scored and seven RBIs. Both hit doubles.
In the minors…
First baseman Frank Schwindel was promoted from Wilmington to Double-A and started for NW Arkansas tonight. He went 3-for-5 with two runs scored and an RBI. Infielder Ramon Torres, who made his Double-A debut last night, collected his first AA hit.
After receiving a pitcher and another outfielder to give Wilmington six on their roster, the Blue Rocks finally received an infielder in Humberto Arteaga from Lexington. Elier Hernandez made his Blue Rocks debut at DH and went 0-for-4.
- In North Carolina, Team USA is getting tuned up for the upcoming Pan-Am Games. Omaha first baseman Casey Kotchman started for the second day and hit a moonshot homer just inside the right field foul pole in the 8th inning.
Casey Coleman pitched the fourth and fifth, both shutout innings. Buddy Baumann threw a scoreless 8th inning for the USA.
Here is what Kotchman had to say following the game (via usabaseball.com):
(On putting on the Team USA uniform for the first time since the 1999 16U team)
“I have some good memories from that team. It was nice to represent the country, especially at such a young age, and to be able to have the opportunity to do it once again is very appealing.”
(On the team’s goals over the first few games)
“We are just coming out in these exhibition games trying to get to know each other. We had great pitching tonight. If the other team doesn’t score, you can’t lose so it was nice to see the boys go out there and do what they did.”