For his father’s birthday, Bobby Witt Jr. delivered a two-run double and three RBIs on Wednesday for the Kansas City Royals in an 8-2 win against the Texas Rangers in Arlington, Texas.
Whit Merrifield added a home run, three hits and four runs as the Royals snapped a three-game slide. In the ninth inning, pinch hitter Emmanuel Rivera iced the game with a three-run triple.
Kansas City reliever Joel Payamps (1-1) threw three shutout innings, striking out five, to pick up the win.
Kolby Allard (0-2), called up earlier in the day from Triple-A Round Rock, took the loss in relief, allowing one run in three innings.
Corey Seager, who hit two home runs on Tuesday, belted a solo home run for the Rangers in the ninth.
Witt’s first three-RBI game came with his father, Bobby Witt Sr., and other family members, in attendance. Witt Sr. played the majority of his 16-year major league career with the Rangers. He celebrated his 58th birthday on Wednesday.
Witt Jr., 21, hit his two-run double in the fifth inning, giving the Royals a 3-0 lead.
Kansas City grabbed the early edge when Merrifield homered to open the third inning. The drive to left field was his first home run in 255 at-bats, dating back to Aug. 28, 2021.
The lack of the long ball has hurt the Royals, who only have three home runs in May.
In the fifth inning, Michael A. Taylor walked and Merrifield singled. Both raced home on Witt’s one-out double to left.
The Rangers scored in the sixth inning on pinch hitter Brad Miller’s fourth home run.
Witt’s third RBI came in the seventh inning on a check-swing grounder to third. Miller charged and flipped home, but Merrifield slid home safely on the fielder’s choice.
Both teams have dealt with makeup games that required them to play a doubleheader last Sunday, leading them to scramble their rotations. Each team went with an opener on Wednesday.
Kansas City left-hander Gabe Speier retired all six batters he faced, striking out one.
For Texas, Matt Bush tossed a perfect first inning with one whiff before handing the ball off to Allard.
–Field Level Media