July 19: Anaheim 3, Kansas City 1
With hindsight, it looks a little bit odd that Andy Messersmith was pulled after getting one out in the sixth even though he only allowed one run. But after getting the first batter of the sixth out, the Royals loaded the bases on a single and two walks. Clinging to a 2-1 lead at the time, manager Mike Scioscia felt the importance of the situation and brought in Francisco Rodriguez, one of his top relief arms. F-Rod rewarded Scioscia by promptly inducing a double play ball off the bat of Darrell Porter.
Rodriguez also pitched a shutout seventh inning, and Troy Percival nailed down the eighth and ninth without getting into trouble.
R H BB KC 010 000 000 - 1 6 4 ANA 101 000 01x - 3 6 4 HR: B. Downing (6) starters IP R ER HR BB SO K. Appier 7.0 3 3 1 4 4 A. Messersmith 5.1 1 1 0 4 2 KC 48-44, ANA 34-58
July 20: Kansas City 2, Anaheim 1
The Royals offense was limp all series, but they managed to steal this game thanks mostly to Bret Saberhagen’s dominance. Sabes has been in the zone over his last six starts, in which he has a 1.90 ERA. His season ERA is down to 3.73, fourth best in the Expansion Division.
The KC offense still needed even more help than a hot Saberhagen. With the game tied 1-1 in the top of the ninth, the Royals had runners on first and third with two outs when first baseman Rod Carew mishandled a Willie Wilson groundball that allowed KC’s winning run to score and spoil an excellent start by Dean Chance.
R H BB KC 100 000 001 - 2 6 3 ANA 000 010 000 - 1 7 1 HR: none starters IP R ER HR BB SO B. Saberhagen 8.0 1 1 0 1 5 D. Chance 8.2 2 1 0 3 3 KC 49-44, ANA 34-59
July 21: Anaheim 3, Kansas City 2
The suddenly cold KC offense tried to break out of it against Jered Weaver, who has thus far been the best pitcher in the Expansion Division. Perhaps not surprisingly, their cold snap continued, and they managed just two runs in the game. Weaver gave up just one earned in eight innings of work, and Troy Percival struck out all three batters he faced in the ninth to pull off a series win for Anaheim.
Back-to-back-to-back singles by Carew, Jim Fregosi, and Bob Boone scored the winning runs in the bottom of the fifth. Bobby Grich staked out Anaheim’s first run with a solo dong in the third.
Even for the two lowest scoring teams in the league, it was an especially low scoring series – neither team scored more than three runs in any of the games.
R H BB KC 011 000 000 - 2 4 4 ANA 001 020 00x - 3 10 1 HR: B. Grich (9) starters IP R ER HR BB SO D. Jackson 6.0 3 3 1 0 2 J. Weaver 8.0 2 1 0 4 2 KC 49-45, ANA 35-59