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Bobby Witt Jr. and Carlos Santana outduel Shohei Ohtani, Royals pitching staff in 12-11 extras win

What a game

Bobby Witt Jr. #7 of the Kansas City Royals watches as the ball clears the wall for a solo home run in the first inning of the game against the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on June 21, 2022 in Anaheim, California.
Bobby Witt Jr. #7 of the Kansas City Royals watches as the ball clears the wall for a solo home run in the first inning of the game against the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on June 21, 2022 in Anaheim, California.
Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images

Alright, so, this game was bonkers, and I’m not going to go blow-for-blow here. We’re gonna hit the highlights, baby, because a blow by blow recap would take something like two thousand words. In any case, the Royals just won 12-11 against the Angels in an extra innings extravaganza that saw a combined eight runs after the eighth inning came to a close.

First up: Jonathan Heasley. Heasley was really good through five innings, where he had six strikeouts and had only given up one run. He was cruising. But, as so often happens with the young Royals starters, Heasley just hit a wall in the sixth inning. He began by walking Taylor Ward and then Mike Trout, bringing up reigning AL MVP Shohei Ohtani to the plate, who swatted a three-run home run. More on Ohtani later. Anyway, that was it for Heasley.

Second up: one BOBBY WITT JR. Witt was on a tear, kicking off the game with a ridiculously impressive home run to right-center field on a ball inside. Nasty swing.

In the seventh inning, Witt added another double on a swing that nearly resulted in his second home run of the evening, scoring Andrew Benintendi to give the Royals a little additional cushion against the Angels.

Witt was not done. In the ninth inning, he swatted another home run to right-center on a ball in, once again scoring Benintendi and once again giving the Royals some much-needed breathing room.

But the real offensive star of the day was Carlos Santana, who had four hits and five runs batted in on the day. It is nearly one o clock in the morning and I cannot think right now, so apologies that there is little context here, but here are some of them.

A home run!

And a nice opposite-field swing to score another run.

Santana is up to a 102 wRC+ on the year. Crazy. He has made fools out of just about everyone except for the Royals organization that has stuck with him. Just goes to show that bad processes don’t always produce bad results.

As for Shohei Ohtani, well. This picture popped up in Getty image search, and now you get to see it as well:

Shohei Ohtani #17 of the Los Angeles Angels is congratulated in the dugout after hitting a 3-run home run in the sixth inning of the game against the Kansas City Royals at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on June 21, 2022 in Anaheim, California. Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images

As mentioned previously, Ohtani demolished a middle-middle 92 MPH fastball from Heasley for a truly gorgeous home run. Why am I showing this? It’s Ohtani, if you don’t like Ohtani hitting what is wrong with you.

But his home run against Scott Barlow in the ninth inning was truly a sight to behold. Barlow’s breaking ball didn’t catch all too much of the plate, but it was down and in against a lefty, which, whooooo boy did Ohtani destroy that pitch. He admired it too, as was his right.

Here is where we discuss the Royals pitching, which was freaking awful. Heasley couldn’t get a single out in the sixth inning. Jose Cuas gave up another run in the sixth, completing the blowing of a four-run lead. Josh Staumont could not find the plate in the seventh inning and issued two walks and allowed two runs. Then, of course, Barlow tossed a cookie to Ohtani and coughed up the Royals’ second 3+ run lead of the night. Daniel Mendgen also gave up one additional run in the 11th, but he managed to get Trout and Ohtani out, so that was quite good.

The Royals scored a pair in their 11th inning from a leadoff double by Whit Merrifield and a Kyle Isbel infield single. Did I also mention that all the Royals catchers played today? Salvy went out with that thumb injury, necessitating one of the moves.

For the record, if the Royals had lost, my recap title would have been: “Royals pitching blows three huge leads with a positive attitude in loss to Angels.” But they did not. In any case, I’m going to bed.