Typically, with James Shields on the mound, the Royals know they are going to get a well pitched game. That did not turn out to be the case tonight, but the offense continued their resurgence to lead the Kansas City Royals to an 8-7 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals.
The Cardinals had their chances against Shields from the start, loading the bases against him in the first with one out. That time, Shields was able to escape unscathed after inducing Yadier Molina to ground into a double play. St. Louis loaded the bases again in the second, this time with two outs, bringing up Kolten Wong. Wong, who had yet to hit a major league home run prior to that at bat, proceeded to hit the ball into the bleachers in right for a grand slam, giving the Cardinals a 4-0 lead.
Jamie Garcia, the Cardinals starter, cruised through the Royals lineup through the first four innings. However, he completely lost his command in the top of the fifth. After striking out Lorenzo Cain and getting Mike Moustakas into an 0-2 hole, Garcia unraveled. Moustakas belted a double to deep center, and the Royals offense ignited. Alcides Escobar tripled to drive in Moustakas, and scored on a double by James Shields. Shields then scored on Nori Aoki‘s base hit, to cut the Cardinals lead to one. With runners on the corners and two out, Alex Gordon hit a drive to deep right for a three run home run, giving the Royals a 6-4 lead.
That lead would not last long. The Cardinals tied the game right back up in the bottom of the inning, aided by Moustakas’s second error of the game. A sacrifice fly and a base hit by Jhonny Peralta brought the Redbirds back into a tie, undoing all the work of the previous half of the inning. St. Louis took the lead once again in the bottom of the sixth. Peter Bourjos, who entered the game as part of a double switch in the top half of the inning, homered on the third pitch he saw from Shields, putting the Cardinals ahead 7-6.
The Royals offense, which had been dormant through much of this season, was not done. Kansas City put runners on first and second with one out in the top of the eighth on a base hit from Salvador Perez and an infield hit for the pinch hitting Billy Butler. After an out, Escobar had an infield hit to second, allowing Perez to score to tie the game.
The Royals completed the comeback in the top of the ninth against Trevor Rosenthal. With one out, Omar Infante doubled to deep right, and scored on a base hit by Eric Hosmer, putting the Royals ahead 8-7. Greg Holland came on in the bottom of the inning, and sealed the victory for the Royals.
Wade Davis picked up the victory, striking out one in a scoreless inning of work. Shields allowed seven runs, five earned, on nine hits and four walks, striking out only one in his 5.1 innings of work. He was, however, 2-2 with a double, an RBI and a run scored at the plate.
Eric Hosmer was 2-4 with a run scored and the game winning RBI.