This is how it was all supposed to be, right? Billy Butler and Alex Gordon with seven hits combined, a passable start by one of Dayton's ex-Braves, and a Soria save. Trust the process.
Baseball's a weird game. A game started by Bruce Chen and an absolutely incapable Rich Hill was tied 3-3 in the 7th inning. Through the first three innings, neither pitcher looked like they belonged in AA, but neither offense was quite able to make them pay.
Why did Treyball pinch-run for Butler in the eighth inning after his fifth hit? The game was already at 5-3, and with two outs, there seemed like not much to gain by having Maier at first for a batter. Factoring in how many times this management crew makes decisions for non-logical reasons, be they flights of sentimentality or just plain stupidity, I'm miffed that they made the decision to deny Billy a chance to go 6-6 in a game. He gets to 6-6, and he gets mentioned on Royal broadcasts for the next hundred years every single time a guy gets three or four hits. The last Royal hitter ended up being Alex Gordon in the 8th slot (ugg), meaning that the Royals were just three batters short of having Butler coming to the plate again. It wasn't a totally unrealistic possibility. Oh well.
- Billy Butler had five hits tonight, and it wasn't a Willie Bloomquist 5-5 either. Butler drove in St. Willie twice, and started the doubles rampage in the third inning. Perhaps the game could be taken as a crystallization of what Butler is, and can still be. Everyone's still a little confused as to why he hasn't shown more power, but as a pure hitter, there's something to those old Manny Ramirez comparisons you used to hear.
Amazingly, that third inning rally was the only multi-run inning in a game that featured 23 hits and six walks. The Royals had guys on base all night, and the Orioles had their spots.
Curious start by Bruce Chen tonight. He ended up slogging through 5 innings, "scattered" eight hits, walked two, and hit two batters. Still, he allowed just three runs. In the first, the Orioles left two men. In the second, they left the bases loaded. In the 5th, they left a runner at third, and the inning ended with Nolan Reimold being thrown out at home by Ryan Freel. How dude allowed just three runs, especially considering that he also allowed a homer, I have no idea.
I just watched the postgame interviews with Adam Jones and Dave Trembley. I'd describe their postgame state of mind as somewhere between despondent and suicidal. Why? See above.
Robinson Tejeda saved the Royals. And since he went three innings, we have Jamey Wright fully available for tomorrow.