Jamie Quirk hit a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the ninth, giving the Royals a 3-2 walkoff win over the Texas Rangers on a nice Tuesday evening at Royals Stadium.
The home team came to the plate with the game tied in the ninth. Texas starter Gaylord Perry was still on the mound, but not for long. Willie Aikens led off with a single and the Rangers turned to reliever Jim Kern. German Barranca made his season debut for the Royals as a pinch-runner and took third when Amos Otis singled. Otis took second on the play as the throw went to third, so Texas issued an intentional walk to Clint Hurdle. Quirk fouled off several pitches before hitting a fly ball to center field, deep enough to score the speedy Barranca.
The ninth-inning run made a winner of Rich Gale, his third victory of the season. Gale scattered nine hits over his nine innings, while walking three and picking up five strikeouts. Texas scored their two runs in the third, as Bud Harrelson and Mickey Hatcher singled with one out. Bump Wills doubled to drive in both runners, giving the Rangers a 2-0 lead. But Gale would hold Texas to four hits after that.
Kansas City tied the game in the fifth. Hurdle led off with a single but Perry retired the next two hitters. U L Washington came through with a double for one run. Willie Wilson singled to score Washington and tie the game. Perry held the Royals to eight hits in his eight innings, with three strikeouts and two walks.
With the win, the Royals improved to 38-23 and got a split of the two-game series. They remained seven games in front of Chicago in the AL West.
George Brett watch: on the disabled list with an ankle injury. Season stats: .337/.407/.609.
Box score and play-by-play: https://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/KCA/KCA198006170.shtml