Once again, the Kansas City Royals found themselves in another extra inning playoff game.This time, instead of using their speed to earn the victory, Mike Moustakas homered to give the Royals a 3-2 victory in eleven innings, as the Royals took a 1-0 lead in the ALDS.
Vargas and Weaver matched each other virtually inning for inning, as they engaged in a classic pitcher’s duel to kick off the first round of the playoffs. Both pitchers logged two scoreless innings to begin the game before the Royals scratched a run across in the top of the third. With two outs, Mike Moustakas drew a walk. Alcides Escobar followed with a double to center, plating Moustakas to give the Royals an early 1-0 lead.
The Angels came right back in the bottom of the inning. Vargas had set down the first eight batters he faced before Chris Iannetta deposited a flat changeup into the seats in left, tying the game.
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The Royals once again worked a run across in the top of the fifth. Alex Gordon led off the inning with a double on a fly ball to center that Mike Trout appeared to lose in the lights. Salvador Perez followed with a drive to left that Josh Hamilton caught just before the wall, allowing Gordon to reach third as he fell over. Omar Infante followed with a sacrifice fly, as the Royals took a 2-1 lead.
Once again, the Angels tied the game up in the bottom of the inning. Postseason warrior David Freese led off the inning with a home run, as he continued to prove that he exists strictly to have a hot bat in October.
That score held up through the regulated nine innings, as the Royals continued their master plan to cram as much playoff baseball as they can into their time in the postseason, making up for the past 29 years. They had a chance to take the lead once again in the top of the tenth, as Billy Butler worked a one out walk, and pinch runner Terrance Gore stole second. After an intentional walk to Gordon put runners on first and second, Kevin Jepsen managed to work out of the jam by getting Perez to fly out and Infante to put up to end the threat.
Then came the top of the eleventh inning. Fernando Salas came in to replace Jepsen, and Mike Moustakas greeted him with a blast to right, his solo home run giving the Royals a 3-2 lead. That would be all they needed, as Greg Holland set down the Angels in order in the bottom of the inning to preserve the 3-2 victory.
Danny Duffy earned the win, pitching a scoreless inning of relief, allowing a hit while striking out one. Moustakas was 1-3 with a walk and the game winning home run in the victory.