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Royals jump up early in 8-5 victory over Milwaukee

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Holland tries to give away win, but Cool Stuff locks things down.

Welcome back, your dreams were your ticket out.
Welcome back, your dreams were your ticket out.
Mike McGinnis/Getty Images

Take a trip back in the Way Back Machine to any point last season. If at any random point chosen in the 2014 regular season Present You told Then You that Mike Moustakas would have three-walk game, Then You would have punched Present You square in the mouth. If Present You told Then You that not only would Mike Moustakas have a three-walk game, but that 60 games into the season Moustakas would be slashing a robust .320/.378/.452 while leading American League third basemen in the voting for the All-Star Game somewhat legitimately (tied with Manny Machado for second-best fWAR amongst 3B in the AL though trailing Donaldson, who is undoubtedly hampered by the exchange rate, by a wide margin), Then You would probably have convinced yourself that the manifestation of a Future You talking such outlandish nonsense was a sure sign of your insanity to which your only logical recourse would be voluntary institutionalization.

Some things just don't make sense.

Tonight, the Royals knocked around Kyle Lohse and Brewers pitching to the tune of eight runs. It took Lohse 100 pitches to get through five innings and more than 30 to get out of the first. The Royals struck early and often, making the Brewer righty's night both interminably long and relatively short. By the time Lohse recorded his second out of the night, Alex Gordon had sacrificed the third Royals run of the night in from third. Kansas City plated five runs while Lohse was still pitching. They crossed home plate two more times against Neal Cotts in the sixth and once more versus Michael Blazek in the eighth.

For his part, Edinson Volquez limited the damage, ceding a mere two runs, both of which came in a messy fifth inning in which Volquez allowed four Milwaukee baserunners. Jonathan Lucroy drove in two (Hector Gomez and Hernan Perez) with a double, but that was all the Brewers would get from Kansas City pitching until closer Greg Holland entered the game with a six-run lead in the ninth.

Of course, since he was not throwing in a save situation, Greg Holland felt compelled to turn the game into one for Wade Davis. Holland let the first five batters he faced reach base, two of whom scored on a Martin Maldonado single. After uncorking a wild pitch and walking Gerardo Parra, Holland yielded an RBI-double to Jonathan Lucroy, necessitating Davis's entry into the tilt with three earned runs charged to Holland in zero innings pitched.

With a mere three-run lead and no outs in the frame, Davis locked horns with Ryan Braun first. Digging a 3-0 hole against the former MVP, Cool Stuff attacked Braun up in the zone on back-to-back pitches before getting Braun to chase low on a swing Braun tried to come back from but held up too late. The streaking Adam Lind stepped to the plate next, and Davis got Adam Lind to line right to Alcides Escobar at short. Aramis Ramirez likely thought that he held the Brewers' final hopes for a comeback in his hands, but Wade Davis is no normal human being. Davis attacked Ramirez, and Gordon fielded a high fly ball in shallow left to end the bullpen hiccup with authority.

The offensive stars of the game for the Royals were Mike Moustakas, Lorenzo Cain, and Alcides Escobar. The latter two did so on their return to the scene of where they made their major-league debuts. Moustakas drew the aforementioned three walks and drove in the first run of the game when he singled in Alcides Escobar from first and advanced to second on the throw. For his part, Escobar got on base three times, getting plunked by Lohse to start the game and scoring from first on an ensuing single before accruing RBI singles in the sixth and eighth innings. Lorenzo Cain hung the only dong of the game to left field, sending both himself and Mike Moustakas home in the top of the fifth and singled to lead off the ninth.

In things otherwise considered impossible until tonight, Omar Infante recorded his first multi-hit game since May 19 and his first extra-base hit since May 17 (h/t to Cody McElroy). Alex Rios also collected two hits tonight. Whether simply playing the Brewers is the salve each offensive black hole needed or they have been emboldened by the All-Star voting is anyone's guess.

Detroit were the only team in the Central tonight to keep pace with the first-place Royals, as Minnesota and Chicago lost while Cleveland was rained out.