Perez homers in both games of doubleheader, Royals sweep Cardinals with 6-4 and 8-5 victories


ST. LOUIS — Salvador Perez drove in two runs with a homer and a single, leading the Kansas City Royals to a 6-4 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals on Wednesday in the first game of a day-night doubleheader.

“We all love to compete,” Perez said. “Every day, we come into a ballpark trying to win. That’s the goal. We take it day by day.”

Garrett Hampson drove in two runs with a double while Hunter Renfroe added two hits and a run scored for the Royals, who reached the 50-win mark.

Nolan Arenado, Alec Burleson and Paul Goldschmidt homered for the Cardinals, who jumped out to a 3-0 lead.

Alec Marsh (7-6) gave up three runs and three hits in six innings to earn the victory. He struck out eight and walked one. Marsh retired the last 11 batters he faced.

“We won and that’s No. 1,” Marsh said. “It was good. A lot more positives for me. I needed it. It was a great game.”

Kansas City manager Matt Quatraro agreed.

“I thought his stuff was good right out of the gate,” Quatraro said about Marsh. “He seemed really determined to attack. He was efficient. It was a really big effort from him.”

James McArthur earned his 16th save despite giving up a one-out solo home run to Goldschmidt and a two-out single to Arenado in the ninth inning.

“We brought the tying run up to the plate,” St. Louis manager Oliver Marmol said. “These guys are determined. We’re not to give in or give anything away. We gave up six runs and we’re still competing.”

Andre Pallante (4-4) pitched 6 1/3 innings, his longest outing this season. He took the loss, allowing four runs and six hits with five strikeouts and no walks.

“I would like to go out there and get everyone out every single time,” Pallante said. “Sometimes it doesn’t go your way. But I felt like I competed in every at-bat today.”

Perez, who will play in the All-Star Game next week, hit a 424-foot homer onto the grass in center field with one out in the sixth, giving the Royals a 4-3 lead. It was his 11th homer against St. Louis, his most against any National League team.

“The Cardinals, they’ve been playing good,” Perez said. “I just want to help my team to win.”

The Royals added two runs off reliever Chris Roycroft in the eighth. Vinnie Pasquantino drove in a run with a sacrifice fly. It was his MLB-leading 10th sacrifice fly this season. Perez singled home Bobby Witt Jr., who had singled and took second on a wild pitch.

Kansas City scored three runs and four hits in the fifth to tie it at 3-3. MJ Melendez hit a run-scoring double and Hampson drove in two runs with another double.

“I was just looking for something out over the plate,” Hampson said. “I got a good pitch to hit.”

Arenado gave St. Louis a 1-0 lead when he hit a one-out home run 411 feet into the left-field bleachers in the second inning. It was the fifth consecutive game going back to Aug. 13, 2020, that he has homered against the Royals.

Burleson hit a two-run homer into the right-field bullpen in the third inning.

“They got up 3-0 on us and it would have been easy to just say maybe we’ll get them in Game 2,” Hampson said. “But we fought back and got the win. It’s huge.”

EXTRA PLAYERS

Royals: Recalled left-hander Walter Pennington from Triple-A Omaha to serve as their 27th man for Wednesday’s doubleheader. The 26-year-old made his big-league debut last week in Colorado, retiring both batters he faced.

Cardinals: Recalled right-hander Gordon Graceffo from Triple-A Memphis to serve as their 27th man for the doubleheader.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Cardinals: Infielder Tommy Edman (wrist surgery) began a rehab assignment Tuesday night at Double-A Springfield. He singled in three at-bats. He is scheduled for five innings playing center field Wednesday. … Iván Herrera (lower back tightness) caught a full nine innings Tuesday at Triple-A Memphis. He also hit a home run.

UP NEXT

Royals: Right-hander Michael Wacha (5-6, 3.74), who pitched for the Cardinals from 2013-19, has held opponents to three runs and 12 hits while striking out 19 batters in 16 1/3 innings in his past three starts. It will be Wacha’s third career start against the Cardinals. He is 2-0 with 2.19 ERA against St. Louis.

Cardinals: Right-hander Gordon Graceffo (0-0, 2.00) last month made his MLB debut for his only appearance. He pitched 4 1/3 innings, allowing one run.

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AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB



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