Sometimes, there’s not just a whole lot of anything that’s good or interesting that happens for your team. Tonight was one of those nights, as the Los Angeles Angels soundly beat the Kansas City Royals 6-0 in a bit of a snoozefest for Royals fans.
Starting on the mound for the Royals against the Angels was...Angel. Angel Zerpa, that is. Zerpa was the first starting pitcher named “Angel” to ever face the Angels in their franchise’s history, so that’s fun. Zerpa began the game by striking out Japanese Babe Ruth, Shohei Ohtani. Indeed, through four strong innings, Zerpa didn’t allow two baserunners in the same inning (unfortunately for Zerpa, one of those baserunners was an Ohtani home run, but what are you gonna do that’ll happen sometimes).
Zerpa began to unravel a bit in the fifth inning, a very, very weird inning. Somebody named Phil Gosselin singled to begin the inning, and Magneuris Sierra placed a perfect bunt single after which Zerpa made a “throwing error” to allow Gosselin to go to third base. After two pitches against Michael Stefanic, Zerpa left the game with an injury, forcing Amir Garrett to replace him with a 2-0 count. Garrett unleashed a wild pitch to allow Gosselin to score, but only after MJ Melendez yeeted a ball into left field on a pickoff attempt—which was affected by umpire interference, funny enough. That doesn’t happen often.
Anyway, one inning’s worth of baseball was enough to decide the game. In the bottom of the sixth inning, Nicky Lopez was hit with a pitch by Angels starter Jose Suarez, who until that point was doing the type of Crafty Lefty Shenanigans that the Royals always succumb to. After singles by Andrew Benintendi and Melendez, the Royals had the bases loaded with one out. They did not score, as Hunter Dozier hit into a fielder’s choice and Vinnie Pasquantino flied out.
Meanwhile, in the top of the very next inning, some guy named Luis Rengifo hit a double to score a pair of runs with the bases loaded, and the Angels scored again with the bases loaded after Wyatt Mills hit Jo Adell with a pitch. Funny—when you can’t score with the bases loaded but your opponent can, you tend to lose. At that point, the score was 5-0 Angels, who would add another solo home run in the ninth inning to get to the 6-0 score.
There also weren’t any real highlights, either. Benintendi had a nice diving play in the outfield early on, but that was about it. Nothing to write home about. Just a boring ol’ loss for a team that has accrued a lot of them. Shikata ga nai.