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Royals win 6-2

They officially have a winning first half.

MLB: Minnesota Twins at Kansas City Royals
Whit Merrifield has some amazing socks that helped him leg out 2 doubles and steal 3 bases, today.
Peter G. Aiken-USA TODAY Sports

Travis Wood pitched 4+ innings. Had it only been 4 innings it would have been 4 shutout innings; instead it was 4 innings with 2 runs allowed. Scott Alexander came in to save him and gave up an RBI single before he got a pair of groundballs around a walk, the last one for a double play, to escape the inning without allowing the Twins to do any more damage.

Part of the reason Wood did so well was that he got a lot of help from Jorge Soler in left field. Soler made a handful of nice running catches but his big highlight was probably when he gunned down Miguel Sano trying to go first-to-third with nobody out in the top of the second.

On the offensive side, in the bottom of the second against Hector Santiago Alex Gordon did his thing - getting hit by a pitch - and Whit Merrifield continued his petition to change his nickname from “Two-Hit Whit” to “Two-Bag Whit” with his thirteenth double to drive in Alex (he later got his fourteenth, too.) Whit stole third. Hosmer hit an RBI-double to an inexplicably, entirely empty right field. Salvador Perez hit one off the end of his bat over a leaping shortstop for another RBI. 3-0 Royals

In the bottom of the third Alcides Escobar greeted reliever Phil Hughes with a line drive into the right-center gap to bring home Ramon Torres on a double after Torres had walked to lead off the inning. Alex Gordon immediately followed that up by ripping an RBI single into right field immediately after. 5-0

In the bottom of the fifth Soler led off with a double into right center and Escobar immediately followed up with an RBI single. Escobar had 7 hits and 7 RBIs in this series. He still deserves a day off, though. 6-2

After Alexander gave the Royals 2 innings, Peter Moylan pitched a silent seventh, Joakim Soria a clean eighth, and Kelvin Herrera a laborious but ultimately scoreless ninth.

Whit Merrifield also stole 3 bases, including third twice, so that was pretty fun.

The Royals are now halfway through the season and have a winning record at 41-40. They’re tied for second place and 3 games back of the division leader. They’re half a game out of the wild card. Looks like the trade deadline is going to be pretty dull, after all. The Royals fly to Seattle for a late game tomorrow night. Ian Kennedy will face rookie Andrew Moore making his second career start.