Royals

Salvy splashes walk-off grand slam for Royals’ 8-4 victory over Twins

Royals’ Salvador Perez hits walk-off grand slam against Twins

The Royals' Salvador Perez hit a walk-off grand slam for an 8-4 victory against the Minnesota Twins at Kauffman Stadium on Friday August 14, 2018.
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The Royals' Salvador Perez hit a walk-off grand slam for an 8-4 victory against the Minnesota Twins at Kauffman Stadium on Friday August 14, 2018.

On this occasion, he was Salvy splashed.

Salvador Perez, who has turned the water bucket splash during the television interview after a victory into a ritual, got drenched on Friday night after crushing a walk-off grand slam to beat the Twins 8-4.

“I didn’t feel anything,” Perez said. “I was super excited.”

Perez got the celebration bath after he crossed home plate to cap a Royals’ comeback.

They trailed 4-3 entering the ninth inning. But the Royals kept alive their recent torrid pace at Kauffman Stadium with a rally that started with one out.

Rosell Herrera doubled down the left-field line and scored the tying run on Whit Merrifield’s single to center.

Merrifield took third on Adalberto Mondesi’s single. The Twins intentionally walked Alex Gordon, and up stepped Perez. He didn’t see a usual defense.

The Twins made a switch, subbing infielder Logan Forsythe for outfielder Robbie Grossman. With five infielders the Twins were playing for a double play.

But after falling behind in the count 0-2, Perez worked it full before launching his 26th home run of the season, this one off Trevor Hildenberger, 422 feet to left center.

About the five infielders, “I wasn’t thinking about that,” Perez said. “I just tried to hit the ball.”

The Royals’ third walk-off victory this month was the most dramatic.

“Salvy put together a tremendous at-bat,” Royals manager Ned Yost said. “He got one he could handle and drove it into the night.”

The walk-off home run was the second in Perez’s career and the sixth walk-off grand slam in Royals history, the first since Paulo Orlando in 2015.

The Royals had picked up teammate Jorge Lopez, the starting pitcher who left the game in the fifth inning with a rib contusion.

Kansas City Royals starting pitcher Jorge López exited with a left rib contusion in the fifth inning of Friday night's August 14, 2018 game against the Minnesota Twins. López and third baseman Hunter Dozier collided chasing a pop up in the fourth.

Lopez took a perfect game into the ninth inning in his last outing. He pitched four scoreless innings Friday, but in the fourth he collided with third baseman Hunter Dozier on a chopper to the left side.

“It was a play where we need more communication,” Yost said. “Dozier needs to call him off and he didn’t. I think they were both kind of going for the ball and Doz hit him, and Doz is a big boy.”

Lopez started the fifth, but Twins hitters had him measured. They scored three, and Lopez left the game after a mound meeting that included trainer Nick Kenney.

“I came back to my warm-up pitches, I felt like something was starting to bother me,” Lopez said.

Lopez nearly pitched himself into baseball’s record book in Minnesota last Saturday. He became the first player in team history to retire the first 24 batters of a game and was bidding to pitch the Royals’ first no-hitter since Bret Saberhagen in 1991.

Acquired in the trade with Milwaukee that sent Mike Moustakas to the Brewers, Lopez took the loss in his first three Royals outings. But his most recent two appearances included a 14-inning scoreless streak.

The Royals had a chance to tie the score in the eighth. With two outs Ryan O’Hearn walked. Jorge Bonifacio followed with a shot to the left-field corner. Third-base coach Mike Jirschele waved O’Hearn home, but the relay throw from shortstop Jorge Polanco came in on the fly and beat O’Hearn, leaving the score 4-3.

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The Royals jumped on Twins starter Jose Berrios for two early runs.

Mondesi’s speed got the Royals their first one. In the first, he drew a walk and promptly stole his 23rd base of the season. Perez blooped a two-out RBI single to right.

Bonifacio singled in the second, found his way to third two batters later and scored on Merrifield’s sacrifice fly to deep center.

Berrios settled down after that, striking out five straight hitters at one point.

Mondesi greeted Twins reliever Trevor May with a 437-foot solo home run into the fountains in right field to make it 4-3 in the seventh. According to the Royals, six of Mondesi’s eight home runs this season have traveled at least 400 feet.

But the big inning and big blast came in the next inning and kept the Royals hot. They’ve won 12 of 14 games at Kauffman while improving to 51-96.

You never know what’s going to happen,” Perez said. “You just need to play hard and see what happens.”

Defensive gem: Gordon, the five-time Gold Glove left fielder, was shading toward left center when Polanco lofted a fly near the left-field line. Gordon got there in time to make a sliding catch and perhaps prevented a big inning. The Twins had two runners on and one out.

Lively debut: Pitcher Ben Lively, acquired off waivers from the Philadelphia Phillies earlier this month, made his Royals debut Friday. He struck out two in a scoreless eighth.

Royals 8, Twins 4

Minnesota

AB

R

H

BI

BB

SO

Avg.

Mauer 1b

5

1

2

1

0

1

.275

Polanco ss

5

0

1

0

0

0

.275

Cave cf

5

1

1

1

0

1

.264

Grossman lf

5

1

3

1

0

0

.267

Forsythe lf

0

0

0

0

0

0

.235

Kepler rf

5

0

1

0

0

0

.229

Astudillo c

4

0

3

1

1

0

.314

Adrianza 3b

4

0

0

0

1

0

.244

Austin dh

4

0

0

0

0

2

.223

Petit 2b

3

1

2

0

1

1

.324



Kansas City

AB

R

H

BI

BB

SO

Avg.

Merrifield 2b

4

1

1

2

0

1

.302

Mondesi ss

4

3

2

1

1

1

.286

Gordon lf

4

1

1

0

1

1

.238

Perez c

5

1

2

5

0

0

.237

Dozier 3b

4

0

0

0

0

3

.230

O’Hearn 1b

2

0

1

0

2

1

.264

Bonifacio rf

4

1

3

0

0

1

.243

Goodwin cf

4

0

0

0

0

2

.240

Herrera dh

3

1

1

0

1

1

.225



Minnesota

000

030

100

4

13

0

Kansas City

110

000

105

8

11

0

One out when winning run scored. LOB—Minnesota 12, Kansas City 7. 2B—Mauer (24), Grossman (24), O’Hearn (5), Bonifacio (15), Herrera (11). HR—Mondesi (8), off May; Perez (26), off Hildenberger. RBIs—Mauer (44), Cave (36), Grossman (41), Astudillo (10), Merrifield 2 (56), Mondesi (27), Perez 5 (75). SB—Petit (2), Mondesi (23). SF—Merrifield.

Minnesota

IP

H

R

ER

BB

SO

ERA

Berrios

6

5

2

2

3

9

3.81

May, H, 5

1

1

1

1

0

1

4.19

Rogers, H, 15

1

1

0

0

1

1

2.86

Hildenberger, L, 4-4, BS, 3-9

<AF>1/3

4

5

5

1

0

4.70

Kansas City

IP

H

R

ER

BB

SO

ERA

Lopez

4<AF>1/3

9

3

3

0

1

3.93

Newberry

<AF>2/3

0

0

0

2

0

2.70

Vasto

1

0

0

0

1

1

7.36

McCarthy

1

2

1

1

0

1

3.25

Lively

1

1

0

0

0

2

6.57

Hammel, W, 3-13

1

1

0

0

0

0

6.04

Inherited runners-scored—Newberry 1-0. T—3:15. A—18,389 (37,903).

Blair Kerkhoff

Blair Kerkhoff covers the Kansas City Chiefs and Royals and college sports for The Star.

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