Nick Loftin, Bobby Witt Jr. narrowly avoid disaster in KC Royals win Thursday

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The KC Royals bats were all the rage on Thursday, beating the reigning AL West champion Houston Astros in a decisive 13-3 fashion. A nine-run outburst in the first inning gave Kansas City an insurmountable lead. But, in the top of the fourth, shortstop Bobby Witt Jr. and second Baseman Nick Loftin combined for a spectacular defensive highlight, narrowly avoiding disaster.

Two KC Royals infielders were all smiles after dangerous, breathtaking defensive highlight.

Both players came up smiling after the groundout, while thankful fans breathed a sigh of relief. Royals manager Matt Quatraro spoke his feelings to's Anne Rogers.

"They thought it was funny. I didn't quite,” Quatraro said.

This was possibly the most thrilling defensive highlight in Kansas City's dominant win on Thursday. The Royals bats went cold following the first inning but rallied for four more runs across the sixth and seventh innings. Defense and starting pitcher Brady Singer's solid start kept the Astros quiet as Kansas City won their seventh game in the past eight matchups against Houston.

Witt himself had quite the series finale, slamming two home runs in a four-hit, five-RBI day. Believe it or not, Witt was the last Royals play to have that stat line, posting identical stats against the Washington Nationals on May 26, 2023. Witt reminded his few remaining doubters why Kansas City invested historic money in the shortstop, keeping a franchise cornerstone under contract for the foreseeable future.

Loftin, the player who hurdled over Witt, had a solid game in his own right. He scored two runners on a single in the run-happy first inning, raising his season total to three RBI and three hits. Loftin hasn't seen much action to start 2024, despite Michael Massey being injured and Loftin's strong debut last September. Games like Thursday, where he reached base safely twice in four plate appearances, strengthen his case to stay with the big-league club.

Kansas City hosted the Chicago White Sox and Astros for seven total games in Kauffman Stadium, winning all seven games. This was the team's first undefeated seven-game homestand since 1988, and only the third in franchise history. The Royals are undoubtedly one of baseball's hottest teams, currently sitting second in the AL Central standings. The Royals begin a three-game set against the New York Mets on Friday, with right-handed pitcher Michael Wach starting for the boys in blue.

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