Brewers' Cain enjoys feeling from cheering Royals crowd
After notching just two wins on a seven-game road trip, the Royals returned to Kauffman Stadium on Tuesday seeking an offensive spark.
They received some help from Salvador Perez and Alex Gordon, who were reinstated from the disabled list prior to a 5-2 loss. Perez hit a home run in the fourth inning of his season debut for the Royals' first run of the night, and Gordon hit a double and scored on Alcides Escobar's sacrifice fly in the fifth inning.
But with the Brewers and Lorenzo Cain in town, their contributions weren't enough. The Royals peppered four hits off Brewers starting pitcher Zach Davies, who lasted six innings, and knocked only two more against Milwaukee's bullpen.
The Royals dropped to 5-16. Starter Ian Kennedy, who gave up a three-run homer to Travis Shaw after taking Ryan Braun's line-drive RBI single up the middle off his right foot in the third inning, was charged with his third loss of the season.
The Royals and Brewers (15-9) will wrap up this two-game series on Wednesday night.
Where'd the comebacker hit?
Around my pinky toe. Right on the side of my foot.
You could tell right as I took off my sock. It was red. You could tell.
How’d it affect you?
It did. I started noticing myself. I pulled that pitch right down the middle to Shaw. I felt like with a couple more pitches it’d be fine. But I yanked the change-up. That’s what I was telling Cal (Eldred, Royals pitching coach). I said I noticed myself start pulling pitches and either get off my backside a little quicker. I told him … I was making good pitches before that. It stinks because it felt good to right up to that point. And then it cost us a chance to win. That’s the most frustrating part. Not how it looks, but the part where you yank a pitch, one mistake down the middle, three runs, just like that.
Can you make the next start?
We’re gonna wear a boot just to make sure and take pressure off it. So the next couple 12 hours till I get back here and try to figure out what’s going on, we’ll see. I think that’s where we’re taking it. See how it feels. Nothing’s broken. That’s the good thing.
Ever happen to you before?
I’ve been hit before, but not like — this is right off my push-off leg. Soon as I came out of the game, the adrenaline came down a little bit. As we were talking about, I said hold on I wanna go downstairs. I looked at it. As soon as I took a step to go up the stairs, I felt it. I was like, ‘Warm somebody up.’
It’s off these tiny little bones that mean a lot. I’ve learned my lessons in the past where pitching through things that can affect your movements and your balance makes a big difference, especially later down the road.
Is that the danger?
That’s what Cal said. He was like, ‘I don’t want you overcompensating and you got arm issues later on down the road.’ I learned my lesson doing that last year.
Was it adrenaline that got Kennedy through the rest of the third?
(Adrenaline) didn't get him through it. He ended up giving up a three-run homer. Adrenaline didn't do that. He was hurting. He was trying to compensate for it and trying to pitch through it, but it put him in a position where he started flying off the ball a little bit.
We don't want to put him in a situation where he's overcompensating for one thing. It could lead to something more serious, especially in his elbow or his shoulder, so we took him out of the game.
Good job by Burch Smith (three innings, three hits, one earned run, two walks, two strikeouts).
Great job by the bullpen tonight. Burch ... a good two-inning stint by (Blaine) Boyer, which was good. Get him on a good note. Tim Hill with a good outing.
Was Ian having trouble pushing off?
(Ian) just said he was very sore. He said he was just pulling off the ball. He didn't say he was having trouble pushing off. He just said he was really, really sore and having to make an adjustment.
What'd you think of Blaine Boyer (two innings, one hit, one walk, six batters faced)?
It was good to see. He came in, had two innings. That's something to build off of.
Ever seen a reaction to a homer like that on the road?
That's once in a lifetime type stuff there. I definitely enjoyed it. It was a nice feeling. I never hit a homer on the road and people cheered for you.
On the first at-bat, expectations for the crowd.
I didn't know what to expect, but I was definitely a little nervous. Goosebumps, but it felt great. No better feeling than that when people are cheering for you like that and showing you love like that. It's definitely a nice feeling and I enjoyed it. I enjoyed tonight.
I wasn't expecting anything but love. I didn't even think about anything else.
It did. Throughout the entire game they were cheering, screaming out there in the outfield. Every time I came in the dugout they were screaming, yelling for me, so it was a good day. I had fun.
A night to remember?
For sure. I talked to the guys earlier. I told them I'll try not to lean back on somebody tonight, but I didn't keep my promise. It was nice to definitely hit a homer against my former team. I was definitely fired up, I was definitely pumped up tonight.
Did you see yourself doffing your helmet to the crowd?
For people to cheer like that, you had to accomplish something. We were able to go to two World Series. Like I said it was a nice feeling. I had the opportunity to tip my hat and for them to cheer, for me just shows how much they care and how much they love and support not only me but my old teammates as well.
Was it tough in the box after that?
It was tough. I had the adrenaline going. Initially, I planned on taking the first pitch, but after I got the ovation, I was definitely swing-happy after that.