KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Mike Matheny spent about 20 minutes within the dugout earlier than his Kansas City Royals took the sphere in opposition to the Toronto Blue Jays on Wednesday and tried to place what has been a depressing 20-game stretch into perspective.
“There’s some things we can get better at,” Matheny mentioned of the 5-15 rut, “and it’s a long list.”
They took care of a few them of their collection finale in opposition to Toronto.
Kansas City lastly managed to get into hitter’s counts all through the sport, knocking out Blue Jays starter Yusei Kikuchi earlier than the tip of the primary inning, and rolled the remainder of the best way to an 8-4 victory that ended a three-game dropping streak.
MJ Melendez and Emmanuel Rivera drove in two runs apiece. Carlos Santana went 4 for 4 and reached base 5 occasions throughout his eighth profession four-hit sport. And lumbering catcher Salvador Perez had his first triple in 5 years.
“I mean, it’s helpful when you start talking about hitter’s counts instead of pitcher’s counts,” Matheny mentioned afterward. “We have been on the other side of that, where you have to go to the bullpen early and have to kind of navigate things.”
Brady Singer allowed dwelling runs to Raimel Tapia and Zack Collins however solely allowed one different run in 5 powerful innings. He improved to 3-1 in his 5 begins whereas the remainder of the Kansas City rotation is 3-25 in 50 mixed begins.
“I felt like I battled,” Singer mentioned. “Gave the team a chance to win.”
Kikuchi retired solely two batters whereas strolling 4 and serving up two hits that value him three first-inning runs — two greater than Kansas City scored in its final 4 video games in opposition to the Blue Jays, together with a pair of shutouts to start out the collection.
Toronto briefly tied the sport 3-all earlier than Trevor Richards (2-1) allowed three extra runs within the fourth and fifth innings.
“It gets tough,” Blue Jays supervisor Charlie Montoyo mentioned, “because you’ve got to cover eight, nine innings when the bullpen is already thin. So like I always say, pitching and defense wins. If Kikuchi comes throwing strikes, we have a good chance.
“Credit to our team that we still battled back and were in the game,” he added, “but it surely was an excessive amount of to beat.”
Given how a lot bother the Royals have had scoring runs currently — they’d gone 18 straight innings with out getting anybody throughout dwelling plate — they little question welcomed the Kikuchi’s wayward methods on Wednesday.
He began by strolling Andrew Benintendi and Bobby Witt Jr. to arrange Melendez’s two-run bloop double. Then, the left-hander walked Santana earlier than Rivera’s run-scoring base hit. And to complete issues off, Kikuchi walked Michael Taylor earlier than Montoyo introduced in Trent Thornton to cope with a bases-loaded mess.
Thornton bought a stunning snare from shortstop Bo Bichette to forestall extra runs from scoring.
It did not take Singer lengthy to cough up the Royals’ lead: He served up homers to Tapia within the first and Collins within the third, each on 3-2 counts, together with Vladimir Guerrero Jr.’s RBI grounder that knotted the sport 3-all.
Perez’s single and Melendez’s grounder gave the Royals the lead again within the fourth, and so they prolonged it on Taylor’s double within the fifth, Santana’s single within the sixth and Whit Merrifield’s double within the seventh.
“We’re going to enjoy this one,” Matheny mentioned. “Made the promise to myself that we’re going to stop and enjoy them when things come together the right way. I told the guys, ‘Enjoy dinner with your family and don’t forget to smile.’”
Blue Jays: LHP Tim Mayza (forearm irritation) had a rehab outing for Triple-A Buffalo on Wednesday and will rejoin the membership in Detroit. RHP Nate Pearson (mononucleosis) additionally deliberate to pitch for the Bison of their doubleheader.
Royals: OF Hunter Dozier is coping with “one thing in his facet” that flared up in an at-bat Monday, Matheny said. It kept Dozier out of the lineup for the second straight day. “They’re still checking it out,” Matheny said.
The Blue Jays are off Thursday before sending RHP Jose Berrios (4-2, 5.24) to the mound to open a three-game set against the Tigers on Friday night. The Royals continue their season-high 10-game homestand Thursday night with LHP Kris Bubic (0-3, 9.33) getting the start against the Orioles in the opener of a four-game series.
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