After giving up 27 runs in two games, the Royals needed a good pitching performance. They got it from Jim Colborn and Mark Littell, who teamed up to shut out the Red Sox as Kansas City picked up a 3-0 win on Sunday afternoon at Fenway Park.
Colborn scattered six hits, five of them singles, over 7 ⅓ innings before Littell finished out the game. Colborn did struggle with his control, issuing five walks, but got two double plays and a couple of other key outs to escape jams.
The Royals took the lead in the second as Tom Poquette singled to start the inning. Darrell Porter, facing Boston starter Bob Stanley, homered over the Green Monster in left for a 2-0 lead.
Boston got a one-out double from Carlton Fisk in the bottom of the second, but he was thrown out trying to move to third on a grounder to shortstop Freddie Patek. That possibly kept a run off the board when Dwight Evans singled and Butch Hobson’s fly ball ended the inning.
Kansas City blew a scoring chance of its own in the fourth, as Porter walked with one out and Patek singled, moving Porter up to third. Patek stole second, but Porter was cut down trying to score on Frank White’s ground ball to second. White stole second, but George Brett grounded out to end the inning.
The Red Sox got two men on after two outs in the fifth and didn’t score, then loaded the bases with two outs in the sixth on two singles and a walk. But Colborn coaxed a popup out of Carl Yastrzemski, and the score remained 2-0.
Poquette started the sixth with a double, then Stanley walked Porter. Patek grounded into a forceout at third, but White singled to center, bringing Porter around to score. That gave the Royals a 3-0 advantage.
Colborn got one of those double plays to end the sixth and worked around a two-out single in the seventh. After he walked Yastrzemski with one out in the eighth, Littell took over. He earned his fifth save of the year with five straight outs to help the Royals salvage the last game of the series.
With the win, the Royals improved to 20-23. They remained in sixth place in the AL West, 7.5 games out of first place.
Box score and play-by-play:
1977 sports: A.J. Foyt captured his fourth Indianapolis 500 victory, but his first since 1967. Foyt won handily, beating runner-up Tom Sneva by 29 seconds. Further racing history was made by Janet Guthrie, the first woman ever to drive in the race. However, due to mechanical problems, she completed only 27 laps and finished 29th.
Today’s birthday: Trevor Rosenthal (1990)