Despite having numerous chances to flip the game on its head, the Royals blundered at the plate and dropped Game 1 to the Twins, 4-2. It marks the clubs 69th loss of the season.
It didn’t take long for the Royals lineup, consisting of seven rookies, to flex their muscles. In the top of the first, the reigning American League Player of the Week demolished his eighth home run of the season into the plaza in right field to make it 2-0. The ball traveled at 107 mph and landed an estimated 411 feet from home plate.
AL Player of the Week, checking in. #TogetherRoyal pic.twitter.com/em4yiczkbp— Kansas City Royals (@Royals) August 15, 2022
On the mound for the Royals was Kris Bubic. In his last five outings, the left-hander had posted an ERA under 3.00 and tossed quality starts in four of them. However, it was apparent in the early-going that Bubic wasn’t dealing with his best stuff. Though he struck out the side in the bottom of the first, Minnesota eventually timed up his curveball. In the bottom of the second, Max Kepler snapped an 0-for-29 skid with an RBI-single to left. Three innings later, the Twins took the lead on an RBI-single from Jose Miranda and sacrifice fly from Jorge Polanco.
In the top of the sixth, Kansas City approached its best chance to take control of the game. Pasquantino worked a walk and Michael Massey missed a home run by three feet to put runners at second and third with nobody out. Looking for their first hit with runners in scoring position, the Royals flailed at the dish. Nate Eaton struck out on four pitches, Brent Rooker popped up after being called on as a pinch hitter and Michael A. Taylor struck out on three pitches.
As good teams do, Minnesota responded with an insurance run in the home half on a single off the bat of Gary Sanchez. However, he was hosed at second base by the arm of Eaton in left.
GOT 'EM!! Nate Eaton launches it from deep left field to throw out Gray Sanchez on a double attempt.— Bally Sports Kansas City (@BallySportsKC) August 16, 2022
TV: Bally Sports Kansas City
Stream: https://t.co/3Z9ugAHsCi#Royals pic.twitter.com/dQlmRL8cJH
In ninth, Kansas City sent the go-ahead run to the plate in the form of MJ Melendez. With one out and runners on the corners, Melendez smoked one to first base but the Twins turned an impressive double play to end it.
The Royals, 48-69, will look to even up the series tomorrow night. Zack Greinke will face-off with Sonny Gray. First pitch is set for 6:40 p.m. CT.