Well, expect a bunch of roster moves after this one...
As has become commonplace this past week, the Royals won in come-from-behind fashion, trailing 2 - 1 as the ninth inning commenced. In the top of the ninth, with two outs and two strikes against him, one William Ray Butler hung dong most majestically to knot things up. He did it with gusto, panache, and emphasis, admiring his work with a glare that said, "Hey coach, this is what could happen the other four or five times I should be coming to the plate in these NL-hosted interleague games. P.S. Screw the Cardinals."
Of course, that only tied the game, thanks in large part to the fact that Humberto Quintero fell asleep on third base and failed to break for the plate on a wild pitch to the backstop in the second inning that had he been paying any attention at all even he would have scored on it. Since the game was simply tied up by the Butler homer, there was still much ball to be played.
Unfortunately, Ned Yost's love of the bunt had plenty of time to show itself on the field. In the game thread, Nighthawk summarized Ned Yost's managing philosophy thusly:
Ned['s] wasting scoring chances like someone who didn't have the benefit of learning from The Great Depression. You valued your scoring chances back then. Treated them carefully, with respect. Because you didn’t know when they’d come around again. Ned treats scoring chances like a private equity investor on a coke jag.
As is the Royals modus operandi, many outs were given away and many scoring opportunities didn't yield runs all thanks to small ball. A first-and-third with no outs opportunity in the eleventh led to zero runs as an Escobar bunt led to an out at the plate and a Tim Collins bunt led to a force at third.
In the end the Royals won, having squandered 16 base-runners over the course of the 15-inning exercise in tedium. The Royals regained the lead in the top of the 14th only to have closer Jonathan Broxton's lead-off walk to start off the bottom half of the inning come around to tie the game at three runs apiece. Heading to the top of the 15th with only Broxton and Roman Colon--who had pitched four innings in the past two games--left to pitch, it didn't appear as though Father's Day would treat the Royals well if things weren't dealt with quickly.
With Jarrod Dyson standing on second base after reaching on a bunt single and advancing on a Brayan Pena (surprise!) bunt, Yummiest Betancourt (who replaced the injured Chris Getz in the bottom of the first inning) came up to the plate and hung his own dong off of the seventh Cardinals pitcher of the afternoon, Eduardo Sanchez.
Given a second chance to record three outs without allowing a run, Broxton closed the door, and the Royals took a road series in front of the roughly 13,000 remaining Best Fans in Baseball. Best Fans indeed.