by Jerry Feitelberg
AP photo: Oakland A’s third baseman Ryon Healy (48) celebrates the four game sweep of the Kansas City Royals with Matt Olson (back) Thursday night at Kaufman Stadium
Kansas City, Mo – The Amazin’ A’s swept the four-game series with the Kansas City Royals as they pounded them again 14-5. The A’s, without question, played the spoiler role as they just about ended any hope that the Royals may have had about making the playoffs this year. The Royals, defending World Series Champs, did not look like the team that won the AL Pennant in 2014 and the World Series crown last year. The A’s manhandled their pitching as they outscored the Royals 43-12 in the series. The A’s starter, Daniel Mengden, pitched effectively Thursday night, and he recorded his second win of the season. Mengden went seven innings and allowed no runs and just three hits. He struck out six and did not walk a single batter. J.B. Wendelken pitched a scoreless eighth inning and lefty Dillon Overton was roughed up for five runs in the bottom of the ninth. Bob Melvin had someone warming up just in case, but Overton was able to get the final out of the game.
The A’s scored the first run of the game in the top of the second to start the ball rolling. With two out, Ryon Healy and Marcus Semien hit back to back doubles for the score. The A’s continued to attack the offerings of Edinson Volquez as they plated five more runs in the third. Joey Wendle singled. Volquez walked Danny Valencia to put men on at first and second with no out. Stephen Vogt doubled down the right field line to drive in both runners. After a walk to Yonder Alonzo, Ryon Healy hit a mammoth home run to put the A’s in the lead 6-0. Healy’s ball traveled an estimated 480 feet.
The A’s scored three more times in the fourth. Vogt drove in a run when he walked with the bases loaded. Khris Davis doubled to drive in two more and Royals’ manager Ned Yost removed Volquez from the game trailing 9-0. The A’s continued the onslaught. They added two more in the sixth when Vogt unloaded with a man on board to up the lead to 11-0. The A’s hitters kept blasting away and sustained the night of torture for the Royals and their fans when Marcus Semien hit his twenty-fifth of the season with two men on to make it a 14-0 game.
The Royals score five times in the bottom of the ninth but it was too little, too late and the A’s completed their first sweep of a four-game series since 2012 when they turned the trick against the Cleveland Indians
Game Notes- Hitting stars were Joey Wendle, Stephen Vogt, Ryon Healy, Khris Davis and Marcus Semien. Wendle had four singles in six tries. Vogt had a double, RBI walk and a home run. Healy had a double and a monster three-run dinger as did Marcus Semien. The A’s had just one three-run dinger in September until this series with the Royals. They had four in this series.
The A’s travel to Arlington, Texas where they will play the Texas Rangers over the weekend. The Rangers own the best record in the AL, and they will not take the A’s lightly as they want to have home-field advantage throughout the playoff. Kendall Graveman will pitch for Oakland Friday night and the Rangers’ ace, lefty Cole Hamels, will try to shut the suddenly potent A’s offense down. The game will start at 5:05 PM PT.