The 9th inning between the White Sox and Royals was the height of entertaining.
The Royals won the battle in the top of the 9th inning with a wacky sequence resulting in a tying run.
The White Sox won the war with a walk-off home run.
The Royals and White Sox traded magic moments.
The 9th inning started with the Royals trailing 5-4 and in desperate need of a run. The score came in the most unlikely of ways.
Maikel Franco came to the plate with a man on first and promptly hit into left field. His shot brought Bubba Sarling to third, but Franco himself got into a pickle. Caught in no man’s land between first and second, he booked it for the next base and somewhat gracelessly managed to avoid the tag from Jose Abreu.
White Sox catcher Yasmani Grandal thought the play should have been called out and turned away to argue with the umpire. That was the exact wrong thing to do because Abreu decided to throw home from the seat of his pants to keep Starling from scoring. Of course, that just resulted in Starling scoring as the ball shot through Grandal’s legs while he stood at the plate unaware.
The Royals tied the game, 5-5, on the wild play.
The scriptwriters had something else up their sleeves.
Grandal, whose miscue had resulted in a throwing error for Abreu, more than made up for it when he came to the plate in the bottom of the ninth. A powerful swing later he sent the ball into the stands for a walk-off home run, 6-5.
Chicago improved to 20-12 on the season, moving into first place in the AL Central. Kansas City meanwhile dropped to 12-20, remaining bottom in the division.
The two will continue their series on Saturday.