It feels good to have Adalberto Mondesi back.
Mondesi, who hadn’t played since hurting his shoulder in mid-July, paced the Royals with four hits and three stolen bases, piloting his team to a 6-4 win over the Orioles on Sunday afternoon. For just the second time in 14 rubber matches this year, the Royals won and took a series.
Danny Duffy, making his return from a month-long absence, had a rough time settling in. He put the first two men he faced on base and gave up a run in the first, and he gave up two more in the third after his team had given him a lead. But after that, he managed to bear down and get through the next few innings, pitching into the seventh inning.
Down 1-0 in the home half of the first, the Royals’ offense went to work against former teammate Aaron Brooks. Hunter Dozier ripped an RBI double into the gap to drive in two runs, putting Kansas City up 2-1. The team managed to put up a handful of hits on Brooks, but they never were able to deliver the knockout punch, as only two of the 10 men Brooks put on base wound up scoring.
Baltimore took a 4-3 lead in the sixth after the Royals goofed up a fielder’s choice, but in the home half of the seventh, the offense battled back. Mondesi led off with an infield single, his third hit of the day. After two outs, Alex Gordon ripped a double into deep left-center field, his 30th of the year, to plate Mondesi and bring the Royals even. After a walk, Meibrys Viloria broke the tie with an RBI single into center field, giving Kansas City a 5-4 lead.
This team has so much more fun to it with Mondesi back. I hope they let him play as much as his body will allow this month. The September Royals are always typically fun to watch, but with Mondesi back doing his thing, there’s a reason to tune in every night. Jorge Soler will hit No. 39 soon too, so that’ll be fun.
Whit Merrifield hit his 16th home run of the season in the eighth inning to double the lead. He was 0-for-10 in the series before that. His average had fallen beneath .300, so it came at a nice time. 6-4.
Kevin McCarthy and Ian Kennedy did just enough in the last two innings to get the Royals out of there with a win. McCarthy got the win. Kennedy earned his 25th save in surprisingly easy fashion.
The Royals are 49-89. They avoid loss No. 90 for one more day. Though, in a way, we all took a loss today because we had to listen to Steve Physioc for three hours. He is the Baltimore Orioles of announcers.
Next: after getting tomorrow off, they’ll start a three-game series with the Tigers on Tuesday night.