Kevin Keyes Hits Perfect Note for Kansas City; T-Bones Win 10-5
Kevin Keyes had not been off to the hottest start to begin the 2017 American Association season, but that looks to have changed, as the Kansas City T-Bones’ No. 3 hitter clubbed 2-home runs and drove in six in the T-Bones 10-5 victory over the St. Paul Saints. Zach Walters homered in his first game for Kansas City, and the Saints added three-homers of their own but could not overcome the career night by Keyes.
John Straka, who had been brilliant in his first start of the season, started for St. Paul and found himself in trouble right off. Omar Garcia started the game by drawing the walk and Marcus Lemon reached on a fielder’s choice. Next up was Keyes, who took the second pitch he faced and drilled it for his first homer of the year.
The Saints got two of those runs right back against Gabe Perez. Danny Oh led off the inning and drilled his first home run of the season. Perez retired the next two hitters, but Brady Shoemaker kept the inning alive with a double and scored on a single by Tony Thomas.
The T-Bones led by one heading into the third, when they extended their lead to two. Straka retired the first two batters, and then struck out Walters, but the third strike was dropped to allow Walters to reach. Chase McDonald singled and then Joe Jackson lined a single to center to score Walters, making it 4-2.
In the fifth, Kansas City took a commanding lead. Walters led off the inning by going deep for his first home run of the season. McDonald followed by singling and then Jackson and Daniel Rockett walked to load the bases with no one out. Leonardo Rojas’ single scored McDonald, and a sacrifice fly by Eddie Newton made the score 7-2.
The Saints were down but not out. In the bottom of the sixth, they cut that deficit to four when Brady Shoemaker homered to start the inning. It was his third home run of the season. An inning later, Breland Almadova hit his first home run of the year. That pulled the Saints within three.
However, in the eighth, the Kansas City T-Bones put this game away. Newton walked to begin the frame and moved to second when Marcus Lemon drew a walk two batters later. That brought Keyes to the plate, who drilled his second three-run homer of the game to make it 10-4.
The Saints added one more run in the bottom half of the inning. Tony Caldwell walked with one out and scored following back-to-back singles by Jon Kristoffersen and Danny Oh.
Kevin Keyes finished 2-5 with 2-runs, 2-homers, and 6-RBI. Chase McDonald was 2-5 with a run scored, and Zach Walters and Marcus Lemon each scored 2-runs for Kansas City. Danny Oh continues to heat up for the Saints, going 3-5 with a run and 2-RBI. He hit his first home run of the season. Brady Shoemaker was 2-4 with 2-runs scored and an RBI.
Game 2 of this season series is tomorrow. Jason Creasy (0-1, 19.29) gets the start with the Kansas City T-Bones. He will face Chris Perry (0-0, 1.80). Game time is 7:05.
By Robert Pannier