Salvador Perez celebrated the Kansas City Royals’ second day game on a weekday this week with a pair of home runs as the Royals cruised to a 6-2 victory over the Chicago Cubs. Not to be outdone, he was joined by Andrew Benintendi, Cam Gallagher, and Emmanuel Rivera in the dong fest that gave the Royals that ‘W.’
Before we get to the home runs, we should focus on Brad Keller’s excellent outing, too. In his previous seven outings, Keller posted a 3.61 ERA in 42.1 innings. He continued his recent trend of excellence against the Cubs, posting eight strikeouts against one walk while only allowing two runs—one earned—in six strong innings. Patrick Wisdom tagged Keller in the second for a solo home run, but otherwise Keller didn’t allow a whole lot of hard contact.
But let’s be honest: you’re here for the dingers.
The Royals hit all these guys even after being down two runs, and once they popped, the fun didn’t stop. Perez’s two home runs were his 31st and 32nd on the year, and if this was just a few years ago, we’d be focusing on the race to beat Steve Balboni’s home run record. Thanks to Jorge Soler, that’s not a thing, but Perez could conceivably get to 40 on the year.
After Keller exited the game, the bullpen more than held up their end of the deal. Richard Lovelady, Jake Brentz, and Scott Barlow slammed the door with three shutout innings, striking out five and walking none on the day. Brentz even got a plate appearance of his own! And he walked! No, seriously.
And, of course, for those of you who were interested in former Royals friend Frank Schwindel, he went 0-4 today. It’s always fun to see a longtime minor leaguer get some run and succeed.
Today’s win was the Royals’ fourth in five games. They now stand at 53-68, and another pair of wins against the Cubs will push them ahead of Cubs in the overall standings.