Kansas City struck first, turning three singles by Scott Podsednik, David DeJesus and Billy Butler into the first run of the game. The Astros countered with a one out RBI double by Pedro Feliz that scored Hunter Pence.
Kansas City stayed on top of Paulino, taking advantage of some mistakes to work two runs onto the board. Mike Aviles blooped a single, then advanced to second on a throwing error on a pickoff attempt by Paulino. Mitch Maier doubled, scoring Aviles, then went to third on a passed ball by Humberto Quintero. A Podsednik sacrifice fly made it 3-1 in favor of Kansas City.
Then things started getting weird. The Royals got an unconventional double play when Jeff Keppinger struck out while Michael Bourn stole second, but Keppinger was deemed to be interfering with Jason Kendall‘s throw to second and Bourn was called out as a result. On the field, Keppinger did obscure Kendall’s view, and the throw was wide so it looked like the correct call.
Then Davies, who to that point had been pretty solid, gave up five straight hits, including two doubles which put three runs on the board. Kanekoa Texeira came in to relieve him with nobody out and two on base. A sacrifice moved the runners to second and third and both scored on a Bourn double. The rally stopped after that, but not before the Astros had chalked up five runs and chased Davies.
In the bottom of the fifth, more weirdness affected the game, as with two outs, Jose Guillen was awarded first base on catcher’s interference, loading the bases. The Royals then pieced together seven runs on the inning to retake the lead.
A double by Billy Butler and two wild pitches turned into another run. When the dust had settled, the Royals had raked 20 hits and turned them into 15 runs. It’s quite the team that can get 16 singles and turn them into 15 runs. But the Royals took advantage of the extra bases Houston allowed them to get and made their hits count. The Royals were 9-18 with runners in scoring position and had eight two-out RBIs.
The bullpen was the unsung hero of the game, as the combination of Texeira, Victor Marte, and Robinson Tejeda combined for six innings of relief, allowing just one run, a Jason Michaels homerun bomb off Marte.
Stars of the Game
Mike Aviles, 4-5, 3 RS, 4 RBI
Yuniesky Betancourt, 1-5, 3RBI
Mitch Maier, 2-2, 2B, RBI, 2 RS, 3 walks – reached base in all five appearances
Billy Butler, 3-4, 3 RS
David DeJesus, 3-6
The Royals improved to 28-37, taking a two game lead over Cleveland for fourth place in the AL Central.
Topics: AL Central, Baseball, Billy Butler, David DeJesus, Felipe Paulino, Humberto Quintero, Hunter Pence, Jason Kendall, Jeff Keppinger, Jose Guillen, Kanekoa Texeira, Kansas City Royals, KC, Kyle Davies, Michael Bourn, Mike Aviles, Mitch Maier, MLB, Pedro Feliz, Robinson Tejeda, Royals, Scott Podsednik, Victor Marte, Yuniesky Betancourt