Jul 25, 2014; Kansas City, MO, USA; The crowd reacts after Kansas City Royals designated hitter Billy Butler (16) hits a 2 run home run in the eighth inning against the Cleveland Indians at Kauffman Stadium. Kansas City won the game 6-4. Mandatory Credit: John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

Royals Win Thanks to Pinch-Hit Heroics

The Royals faced the Cleveland Indians tonight in the second game of a four game series and won the game 6-4. The Royals tallied the first runs of the game in the bottom of the second inning. Salvador Perez led off with a solo home run to left field and Mike Moustakas followed that up with a solo shot over the right field fence.

The Indians grabbed a run in the top of the fourth on a solo home run from Carlos Santana. The Royals half of the fourth contained a very strange play that ended up scoring two runs for Kansas City. Alex Gordon led off the inning with a single to left field. After Sal Perez popped up and Mike Moustakas struck out, Raul Ibanez hit a ball down the right field line. He made the turn at second and was rumbling to third which surprised the heck out of me as I watched him from the upper decks of Kauffman. Luckily for him, Jason Kipnis made a poor relay throw and tossed the ball past third base and out of play. Ibanez was granted home plate and two more runs had scored.

Yordano Ventura made it interesting though as he gave up two more runs in the top of the sixth when Michael Brantley singled and then became part of Carlos Santana’s second home run of the night, a two-run shot to right field. Ventura came out to pitch in the top of the seventh and got into trouble when Yan Gomes reached on a Moustakas throwing error and David Murphy singled. Jose Ramirez advanced the runners with a sacrifice bunt and Ned Yost decided to bring in Francisley Bueno to face Jason Kipnis. Kipnis hit a sacrifice fly to score Yan Gomes before Jason Frasor came in to get the final out of the inning.

The score remained tied going into the eighth inning when Sal Perez was able to hit a single in between a Gordon ground out and Moustakas pop up. Ned Yost pinch hit Billy Butler for Raul Ibanez and the Indians countered with John Axford. Butler promptly smashed a two-run home run to left field and all of Kauffman exploded with excitement. (Even the foolish half of the stadium who booed Butler as he walked to the plate. Silly fans.)

Aaron Crow came on to close out the game in the ninth as Greg Holland was unavailable. The Royals have the chance to secure their second series win in a row if they can win on Saturday or Sunday. That would be a good way to get started on becoming this “second-half team” everyone keeps calling them. Let’s hope they get things going.

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