After losing the first game of their series against the feisty Seattle Mariners yesterday, the Kansas City Royals were able to secure game two with an 8-1 win this evening.
It was a well-balanced outing for the Royals, who saw multiple batters collect three hits and multiple pitchers get the job done throughout the evening. The team's record now rises to 67-81, while the Mariners' falls to 79-69 as they attempt to cover some ground in the American League Wild Card race.
Here are three takeaways from tonight's game.
Kris Bubic had himself a night
It may not have ended how he wanted it to, but Kris Bubic's start on Saturday was one of his better ones of the year. Through six innings, he had thrown 90 pitches and allowed just one hit. Manager Mike Matheny sent him back out for the seventh, though, and he gave up a double and a groundout before being pulled. Domingo Tapia surrendered an RBI groundout to charge Bubic with one earned run for the game, but that doesn't take away from his contest. The young lefty walked four and struck out just two — he didn't do anything spectacular. His recipe for success was pitching to weak contact and playing smart baseball, just like it's been for many moments in 2021. Bubic was very good and delivered a much-needed quality start.
Salvador Perez is human after all
Even one of the hottest hitters on the planet is due for a rough game every once in a while. Salvador Perez stepped into the batter's box five times on Saturday night against the Mariners and each of the first four times, he struck out swinging (he singled home a run in the bottom of the eighth). He's always been known as a player who hasn't met a ball he doesn't mind trying to hit but tonight in particular, Perez struggled. His historically good season will almost surely come to a fitting end down the stretch, although this game was certainly one to forget for the Royals' best player.
When Michael A. Taylor's bat is on, he's darn good
It's pretty common knowledge by now that Michael A. Taylor is one of the best defensive outfielders in all of baseball. His combination of instincts, athleticism and sheer ability to track down just about any ball is rare. With that said, his bat has been inconsistent and a bit underwhelming in 2021. That certainly wasn't the case on Saturday, as he collected a pair of key hits for the Royals. Taylor's fifth-inning double scored Adalberto Mondesi, then he drove in himself with a home run in the seventh. When his bat is playing well, Taylor is quite the valuable player. This was one of those instances, without a doubt.