Five is the magic number.
The Royals extended their winning streak to five with a 5-4 win over the Minnesota Twins. It was the fifth time they've played the Minnesota Twins this year. They erupted for a five-run inning to take the lead for good. They collected ten hits - that's divisible by five. Bruce Chen lasted just five innings. The primary damage was done by Alex Gordon - hitting in the fifth spot. It should be no surprise that five is the magic number in the town that George Brett played.
Bruce labored today, struggling to get through five innings against a patient Twins lineup. He was uncharastically off with his command, walking four hitters, the most he has walked in a start since August 23 against Washington, including a walk with the bases loaded. However he also struck out six and somehow managed to work around eight hits, including a solo home run by Kurt Suzuki. Alex Gordon bailed him out with yet another sensational catch, and the difference between the Royals solid defense and the Twins keystone cops defense was pretty evident and likely the difference in the game.
The Royals found themselves down 2-0 in the fourth against Twins starter Kevin Correia before batting around in the inning and plating five runs to take a lead they would not relinquish. Alex Gordon started with a single before being followed by Billy Butler slamming a nice opposite field double down the line. After Mike Moustakas plated a run with a warning track fly out, Justin Maxwell picked an opportune time for his first hit of the year to score another run. Nori Aoki and Omar Infante would tack on RBI singles in the inning before manager Ned Yost rolled the dice with a bold double steal of second and third. Catcher Yosmil Pinto sailed his throw into left field which allowed Aoki to score easily, the fifth run of the inning.
Chen would let things get tight in the fifth as you could see Ned strain to allow Bruce to get the five innings requisite to qualify for a win (and they call us stat nerds!) Danny Duffy relieved Bruce in the sixth and it was lights out from there. Royals reliever Duffy, Wade Davis, and Greg Holland would allow just two baserunners the last four frames to hold on for the one-run victory.
The Royals now stand 9-7, the fifth best record in the league. Five. There's that number again. Its like its a conspiracy.