The Kansas City Royals put their Nos. 7-8 hitters on first and second base to start the bottom of the third inning at Kauffman Stadium on Sunday afternoon. The start of a big rally from the bottom of the order, right?
Nah. The Minnesota Twins had ‘em right where they wanted ‘em.
Trying to put two runners in scoring position, Nicky Lopez attempted a bunt that went awry, and into the air. Twins first baseman Miguel Sanó caught it easily and, with both runners in motion on contact, Cam Gallagher and Jarrod Dyson were easy pickings for an unlikely 3-6-4 triple play, the 725 in major league history. Andrelton Simmons and Nick Gordon assisted.
Watch it go down, as called by Twins broadcaster Dick Bremer of Bally Sports North:
It was the Twins’ 15th triple play since 1966 (which doesn’t count their time as the old Washington Senators) and Minnesota’s fourth since 2017, which all include Sanó. The Twins actually have turned three triple plays since 2019. Sanó did a nice job of not rushing against KC. Very smooth defense on his part.
The Royals hadn’t hit into a triple play since Eric Hosmer did it in 2012, but this one was giftwrapped. You kind of can see what the Royals were thinking — kind of — with the weak-hitting Lopez at the plate and the top of the order coming up next. But they already had one runner in scoring position (the speedy Dyson), and they were down a run with Twins right-hander Bailey Ober (5.63 ERA) on the mound. Tony La Russa probably would agree with Royals skipper Mike Matheny that bunting was the right play there, but it makes more sense to not give up outs against a pitcher on the ropes.