In the hours after his first major-league hit, after his first career homer, after the best day of his baseball career, the Royals’ Jorge Bonifacio lounged in front of his locker in the visitors clubhouse at Globe Life Park.
It was Sunday evening, just 20 minutes or so after the Royals’ 5-2 loss to the Texas Rangers. Bonifacio gazed at the screen of his cell phone. He was startled that a group of reporters wanted to talk to him. This is the other side of “welcome to the big leagues.”
“It’s amazing,” Bonifacio said. “I’m not going to forget this day.”
In just his second major-league start, Bonifacio finished 2 for 4 while batting third in the Royals’ lineup. He recorded his first hit against Rangers starter Yu Darvish in the first inning. Bonifacio jumped on a hanging slider in the third, battering a baseball 421 feet to left field.
“I recognize that pitch and I go for it,” said Bonifacio, who was called up Friday. “Off the bat, I feel like I got that one.”
Bonifacio was making a rare start in center field as Lorenzo Cain drew the day off. Before making two starts in center last season, Bonifacio had not played center field since 2011. But he passed that test, too, surviving the day without any problems on defense.
“Boni had a great day,” Royals manager Ned Yost said.