This Date In Royals History–1980 Edition: June 13

Luck was on the Royals’ side on this Friday the 13th, as Larry Gura scattered nine hits and Willie Aikens homered twice in a 4-3 win over the Brewers at Milwaukee’s County Stadium.

Gura picked up his fifth straight win as he allowed one unearned run on two hits and an error on third baseman Dave Chalk in the first inning. But after that, he would pitch six scoreless innings. The Brewers would have one more good scoring chance against him, after one-out singles by Robin Yount and Don Money in the fifth. But Gura got Brewers slugger Cecil Cooper to ground into an inning-ending double play. 

After the Brewers took that 1-0 lead in the first, Aikens led off the second with a home run against Milwaukee starter Rickey Keeton to tie the score. Aikens broke the tie with another leadoff home run, this one off Keeton in the seventh.

Kansas City broke the game open with two runs in the eighth. U L Washington led off with a double and scored on Hal McRae’s single. Darrell Porter greeted Brewers reliever Jerry Augustine with a single, and Aikens grounded into a forceout which also scored McRae.

Those ended up being two important insurance runs. Milwaukee started the eighth with two singles off of Gura, which brought Dan Quisenberry into the game. He got Sal Bando to ground into a double play and struck out Jim Gantner to end the inning.

After retiring the first two batters he faced in the ninth, Quiz gave up a single to Money and a home run to Cooper, which cut the Royals’ lead to 4-3. But he recovered to get Gorman Thomas to pop up for the final out.

The win was the ninth in 10 games for the Royals, who improved to 36-21 on the season and owned a 6.5 game lead over Chicago in the AL West.

George Brett watch: Still out of the lineup with an ankle injury. Season stats: .337/.407/.609

Box score and play-by-play:
http://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/MIL/MIL198006130.shtml

Today’s birthday: Darrell May (1972)

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