That was a weird, weird baseball game. Here is my attempt to recap it.
The White Sox scored two first-inning runs against Glenn Sparkman. Then he threw an 86 mph changeup to Tim Anderson, who the Royals obviously have a history with, and it went up and in and hit him on the helmet. Sparkman was thrown out of the game, which was perplexing because it clearly wasn’t an intentional HBP.
That caused Jorge Lopez to come in and dump a whole bunch of gasoline on an already lit fire, as he allowed a bunch of Sparkman’s runs to score before yielding a three-run homer for the icing on the cake. It was 7-1, Chicago, at the end of two innings.
The score held for three innings before the Royals started clawing away at the deficit, and it began with a four-run sixth. Jorge Soler smashed a two-run bomb for his 13th homer of the year. Billy Hamilton miraculously reached base, Nicky Lopez snapped an 0-for-20 with an RBI triple, and Whit Merrifield dunked a single into right to make it 7-5.
In the eighth inning, Lopez came through again for the Royals when he hit a two-run, game-tying single, finally bringing the Royals even at 7-7. Momentum was on the right side. The bullpen was rested, and their closer warmed up. They were going to find a way to get this one done!
Then Ian Kennedy came in and ruined everything. Because that is what Ian Kennedy does. Tim Anderson, because of course, hit an RBI double down the left-field line past a diving Hunter Dozier. 8-7.
The Royals, despite not having won any of the last 14 series, hadn’t been swept since the Seattle series in the beginning of April. That streak went up in flames.
Game notes: Whit Merrifield had three hits. Six Royals - Merrifield, Lopez, Gordon, Dozier, O’Hearn, and Hamilton - had multi-hit games. They banged out 15 hits as a team and still couldn’t win the game.
Jorge Lopez, after the home run, settled down to pitch well in relief. He did get 15 outs for the team, and he struck out eight. Maybe he has a future as a reliever. But as long as Homer Bailey is in this rotation, he’ll be seeing the field in the third inning plenty of nights.
The Royals are 18-37. It’s the same exact record that they had at this point last year! Insert your witty joke about the second wild card here.
Next: they go to Texas, I think. Jake Junis gets the ball at 7:05 pm tomorrow night.