Playoff teams are supposed to not just win series against bad teams, but at the end of the year, they are expected to sweep those clubs. Tonight, the Royals did just that, as Alex Gordon homered and Jason Vargas pitched well in the Royals 4-1 victory over the Texas Rangers.
It took a while for the Royals offense to get going, as Rangers starter Nick Tepesch set down the first eight batters he faced before allowing a double to Alcides Escobar. In the bottom of the fourth, the Royals offense came to life. Omar Infante singled, and Alex Gordon followed with a shot over the wall in center for a two run home run, giving the Royals the lead.
That would be all the support that Jason Vargas would need. Vargas was able to keep the Rangers off balance with his fastball and change, keeping the Rangers off the board. Overall, Vargas pitched 6.2 innings of shutout ball, allowing six hits while striking out five batters.
Kansas City tacked on two more insurance runs in the bottom of the seventh. Salvador Perez doubled to deep left, and after a groundout, scored on Billy Butler‘s RBI double. Terrance Gore entered as a pinch runner, and one out later, stole third. The throw got away from Adrian Beltre, allowing Gore to scamper home with his first major league run, giving the Royals a 4-0 lead.
The Rangers got on the board in the top of the eighth. Elvis Andrus led off the inning with a walk, and took second on a groundout. After stealing third, Ryan Rua drove Andrus in with a two out RBI single, cutting the lead to 4-1. That score would hold up, as the duo of Wade Davis and Greg Holland slammed the door, preserving the Royals sweep of the Rangers.