Hunter Dozier and Nick Pratto starred on a big day for the Royals‘ offense as Kansas City played to a 9-9 tie with the San Diego Padres on Monday afternoon.
It was the third tie in the last four games for the Royals, who played to a 4-4 draw with the Angels on Friday and tied the Diamondbacks 6-6 on Saturday before defeating the Rockies 6-1 on Sunday.
After Tommy Pham hit a leadoff homer off Royals starter Mike Minor to put San Diego up 1-0 in the first, Nicky Lopez responded Kansas City Royals Jerseys China in the second inning with a two-run single, then Whit Merrifield followed him with an RBI base hit to give Kansas City an early 3-1 lead.
Minor surrendered a two-run blast to Pham in the third to tie the game at 3 apiece, but Dozier put Kansas City back in front in the fifth, hitting a three-run homer to left field. The 29-year-old slugger, who is expected to play primarily third base this season but started in right field against the Padres, has been on fire this spring. His homer on Monday was his third of the Cactus League slate, and he has a .294 batting average with a 1.045 OPS.
Pratto, the Royals’ 2017 first-rounder, has also been stellar this spring. He continued strengthening his Cactus League resume by hitting a solo blast, his fourth of the exhibition season, and after picking up a one-out single in the bottom of the ninth, he scored the tying run on Emmanuel Rivera’s two-run double. Rivera was thrown out trying to advance to third base with two outs, bringing the game to an end.
Aside from his struggles against Pham, Minor was solid over five frames, striking out four while allowing five hits, a walk and three earned runs — all of which came on Pham home runs. He was just the second Royals pitcher this spring to throw five innings in a game, following Brady Singer on Friday.
Jake Brentz took over on the mound in the sixth and struck out three but allowed an earned run on two hits and a walk before Richard Lovelady tossed a scoreless seventh inning.
Kyle Zimmer entered to begin the eighth inning and had a rough outing, allowing two doubles and two walks while throwing a wild pitch. He recorded only one out — a strikeout of Ivan Castillo — and was charged with four earned runs, though two of them scored with Carlos Hernández on the mound.
Jake Kalish handled ninth-inning duties and gave up a leadoff homer to Juan Fernandez — one that gave San Diego some breathing room before the Royals rallied and tied it in the bottom of the final inning.
The Royals are off on Tuesday before visiting the Angels on Wednesday afternoon. Kansas City has not yet announced a starter, while the Angels will send former All-Star José Quintana to the mound for his fifth outing of the spring.