Gordon now 4th on club's HR list as KC rolls
Veteran reaches 170 career homers; Mondesi drives in 4
KANSAS CITY -- No. 4 is now No. 4 all-time in home runs in Royals franchise history.
Left fielder Alex Gordon drilled a two-run home run in the third, pushing the Royals ahead by three and on their way to a 9-2 victory over the Tigers on Wednesday afternoon at Kauffman Stadium. The Royals captured the two-game set and have won back-to-back series for the first time since the last two series in 2017.
Gordon's home run was his 10th this season and 170th of his career, surpassing Hal McRae. George Brett (317) is the all-time leader, followed by Mike Sweeney (197) and Amos Otis (193).
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Royals starter Danny Duffy even stopped Gordon in the dugout to tell him the news of moving up the home run list.
"I told him that in-game and he said, 'I don't care,'" Duffy said, laughing. "I know he does care. He was just in the moment. He's a gamer. He just wants to win that day."
Gordon, too, laughed when asked about the exchange.
"I didn't say [that]," Gordon said with a smile. "I was just kind of surprised [Duffy] said that as he was passing me in the dugout. I was very pumped to be on the list. I'm very excited to join the company of guys like Hal McRae and the others."
Gordon, in his 12th year, had no illusions he would ever get this high on the list.
"I just wanted to make it to the big leagues and not mess up," Gordon said. "Any time you have been with an organization as long as I have, you're going to pass some people. I'm just an old guy moving up the list."
Added Royals manager Ned Yost, "You sit here and you view back that you've had the opportunity to see just about every one of those home runs. To be able to watch him come up as a fledgling left fielder. He's never really looked back from that point on. It's great to see what he's accomplished throughout his career."
Gordon was hardly alone on the hit parade. Switch-hitting shortstop Raul Mondesi homered and tripled and drove in four runs. Andrew Butera had two doubles, and Hunter Dozier continues to heat up as he added a triple and a single.
Mondesi's homer was a two-run shot in the second inning that wiped out a 1-0 deficit. Mondesi hit a 3-1 sinker from right-hander Michael Fulmer an estimated 426 feet per Statcast™ to right field. The 23-year-old has homered in back-to-back games for the first time in his career, and he now has six homers this season, three from each side of the plate.
Yost, though, was most proud of Mondesi's plate appearance in the fifth with the bases loaded and one out. Mondesi patiently drew a walk, forcing in a run.
"Great [plate appearance]," Yost said. "He's a bit of a free swinger now. But he will take his walks. He's got a good eye. He's just coming into his own offensively, just scratching the surface. You talk about the triple and the home run, but the bases-loaded walk was a phenomenal at-bat."
All of that offense was plenty enough for Duffy (8-11), who cruised through six innings. Duffy gave up just two hits and one run. He walked three and struck out six.
The Royals scored two runs or more in four straight innings Wednesday, the first time that has happened since 2013 at Philadelphia in a 13-4 win. They have scored in four straight innings multiple times this season.
After an off-day Thursday, the Royals open a three-game set with the Orioles at Kauffman Stadium starting Friday at 7:15 p.m. CT. Right-hander Brad Keller (6-5, 3.33 ERA) will pitch for the Royals; right-hander Andrew Cashner (4-12, 4.79 ERA) goes for the O's. Keller, who will be making his 16th start this season, got a no-decision last Friday against the Indians, going five innings and giving up six hits and two runs.