This Date In Royals History–1980 Edition: September 3

The Royals forgot to bring their bats back to work after a day off in the middle of the three-game series, dropping a 3-1 decision to the Brewers in 10 innings on a Wednesday night at Royals Stadium.

Brewers starter Lary Sorenson pitched all 10 innings for the visitors, holding Kansas City to eight hits and two walks. The Royals’ only run came when George Brett hit his 18th home run of the year, this one with one out in the sixth. 

That was the first run of the game, as Royals starter Dennis Leonard was matching zeroes with Sorenson. Leonard held Milwaukee scoreless until Gorman Thomas launched a home run into the left-field general admission seats leading off the eighth.

However, each team had some scoring chances. The Royals had two runners on in the third as U L Washington reached on an error and Willie Wilson singled, but Hal McRae grounded into an inning-ending double play. Brett led off the fourth with a walk but got caught stealing before Willie Aikens singled, and nothing came of those two runners. Milwaukee got two runners on to start the second, but Leonard recovered to strike out the next two batters and get a groundout. In the fourth, Ben Oglivie led off with a single and took second on a one-out single by John Poff. Vic Harris hit a grounder up the middle, cut off by second baseman Frank White, who beat Poff to the bag. White then alertly fired home to nail Oglivie, who had not stopped running on the play.

But perhaps the best chance for either team to push across their second run came in the Royals’ half of the eighth. Wilson led off with a single, and with one out, stole second. Sorenson issued an intentional walk to Brett. But Darrell Porter flied out to left and Aikens grounded out.

At last, Milwaukee scored in the top of the 10th. Robin Yount drew a leadoff walk from Leonard. Cecil Cooper attempted a sacrifice bunt, but Porter’s throw to first sailed wide of Aikens and up the right-field line. Yount scored on the play and Cooper stopped at second. Thomas grounded out, with Cooper moving up to third. After Leonard walked Oglivie intentionally, Don Money doubled to drive in Cooper. Reliever Dan Quisenberry took over for Leonard and got out of the jam with two grounders, but Sorenson finished off his 10th win with a perfect bottom of the 10th.

With the loss, the Royals fell to 85-48 on the season. They still had a 19-game lead in the AL West, and their magic number to clinch the division was 11.

George Brett watch: 1-2 with the home run and two walks. Season stats: .402/.465/.669

Box score and play-by-play: https://www.baseball-reference.com/teams/KCR/1980-schedule-scores.shtml

Today’s birthday: Dave Clark (1962) 

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