Big eighth inning gives Kansas City Royals a series victory in Boston

(Photo by Omar Rawlings/Getty Images)
(Photo by Omar Rawlings/Getty Images) /

Alcides Escobar and Alex Gordon played huge roles in the Kansas City Royals Sunday win in Boston. Yep, you read that right.

In addition to the off-the-field move that ruled most of the social media conversation on Sunday, the Kansas City Royals also played a baseball game.

Spoiler alert: they won again.

This time, it was the Kansas City Royals who put together a big inning, using a four-run eighth to come back and take the series against the Boston Red Sox.

For all the junk talked about Jason Hammel on social media, dude keeps putting together quality outings. In this one, it looked for the longest time like the offense would be the issue. Hammel went seven innings and scattered seven hits and three earned runs, striking out six, including the side in the third.

Yeah, Jason Hammel struck out three batters in an inning. And not just any batters—he punched out Mookie Betts, Andrew Benitendi and Hanley Ramirez.

2017 is a real trip, y’all.

Boston struck first, turning four singles from Ramirez, Xander Bogaerts, Mitch Moreland and Christian Vazquez into a pair of early runs. The damage might’ve been more significant had Hammel been unable to induce a double-play ball off the bat of Rafael Devers right to Whit Merrifield to end the threat and the inning.

In the Royals fourth, Lorenzo Cain and Eric Hosmer led off with back-to-back singles and looked to have the visitors in business. However, Hosmer was cut down at second on a Salvador Perez double play ball and a promising inning would yield a single Cain run thanks to Alcides Escobar’s double.

Devers bounced back from his double-play ball in the third with a lead-off homer in the fifth; initially, it was ruled a double but determined to have just barely climbed above the Green Monster in left.

It got mighty late at Fenway Park before the Kansas City Royals offense showed up. While Drew Pomeranz and Brandon Workman tied the Royals up in knots for seven innings, the arrival of Matt Barnes doubled as the arrival of the life for Kansas City.

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Cain got the party started after reaching on an error after Bogaerts botched his chopper. He moved up to second when Hosmer singled, then Perez kept the line moving with a single to right to load the bases.

Robby Scott began to hurry his warm-up pace. Carl Willis went out to see what might be the matter with Barnes. And apparently he never got a straight answer because Escobar brought home two more with a single to score Hosmer and Perez, advancing to second after Betts’ throw got away.

So to quickly recap the recap, Jason Hammel struck out the side and Alcides Escobar drove in three runs. Telling you, don’t underestimate 2017’s potential to surprise.

Since Escobar tied it with his hit, there was still some work to be done. Scott replaced Barnes and was greeted by Alex Gordon, who tripled in the game-winning run.

Wait, what? I need to go back and look at the box again, surely I wrote that down wrong.


Son of a gun. Alex Gordon tripled in the go-ahead run.

For poops and grins, Kelvin Herrera loaded the bases with two outs in the ninth, bookending a Vazquez single with walks to Jackie Bradley and Devers. Fortunately, he induced a flyout by Betts (he was 2-for-13 in the series; not his finest hour) to end the game and give the Royals a much-needed series win.

Next: Melky back

The Kansas City Royals continue a trip down the Eastern seaboard Monday when they open a series in Baltimore. Danny Duffy will toe the slab in this Deadline Day contest against the Corpse of Ubaldo Jimenez at 6:05 p.m. (CT).