September 2, 2014

Salvador Perez hits a homer and drives in three as Royals hold off Rangers to keep half game division lead

Salvador Perez swings to connect on a home run (photo/MLB)

Salvador Perez swings to connect on a home run (photo/MLB)

Salvador Perez homered and drove in three runs for the Royals who broke out of their mini streak and finished with 10 hits in a 4-3 victory over the Texas Rangers, keeping their half-game lead over Detroit in the Central Division.

Perez had three hits, going long ball in the third with Alex Gordon on base. He also hit a  two-out double in the first to drive in Gordon, who singled and stole second off Rangers starter Colby Lewis.

Yordano Ventura gave up three runs in 6.1 innings getting the win, while the Royals back end bullpen combo of Kelvin Herrera, Wade Davis and Greg Holland held the Rangers hitless the rest of the way.

The Royals are 54-3 when taking a lead into the seventh.

Holiday continues to swing a hot bat and Wong delivers clutch pinch hit homer to push Cards into first (VIDEO)

Kolten Wong watches his two run homer in the seventh inning.  (photo/Bill Greenblatt, UPI)

Kolten Wong watches his two run homer in the seventh inning. (photo/Bill Greenblatt, UPI)

Matt Holliday had the go-ahead hit, an RBI single in the seventh inning after Kolten Wong’s two-run, pinch-hit homer tied the game, giving the Cardinals 5-4 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Monday.The Cardinals are one game ahead of Milwaukee, which lost to the Chicago Cubs. Pittsburgh is three games back.

This is the first time this season the Cardinals moved into first place.

Wong, who was ruled to not have a concussion after banging his head on Sunday,  homered off Pittsburgh starter Gerrit Cole (7-5) to tie the score.  Jon Jay followed with a triple and scored on Holliday’s single to left. Holliday also had a two-run double in the third.  He is 7 for 11 with three home runs and 12 RBIs in the last three games.

September 1st…not only are the Royals and Cardinals in first place, but their Triple-A teams will face each other in the playoffs

The Omaha Storm Chasers, the Royals Triple-A affiliate, celebrate their division championship. (photo/OmahaStormChasers.com)

The Omaha Storm Chasers, the Royals Triple-A affiliate, celebrate their division championship. (photo/OmahaStormChasers.com)

The Omaha Storm Chasers (75-67) clinched a franchise record fourth straight division title, eliminating the Oklahoma City RedHawks with a 13-8 victory over the Colorado Springs Sky Sox to win the American Conference North. The Storm Chasers have qualified for the postseason in each of the four years at Werner Park.

Omaha entered their final series of the season trailing Oklahoma City by 2.0 games, but reeled off four straight wins over the Sky Sox while the RedHawks suffered three straight losses to the Iowa Cubs in Des Moines to help them capture the crown. The Chasers are the only team in the Pacific Coast League to qualify for the playoffs in each of the last four seasons.

The postseason berth marks the fourth trip to the PCL Playoffs in franchise history. The Redbirds (78-64) won league championships in 2000 and 2009, and lost in the PCL Championship to Tacoma in 2010. The Redbirds have gone a league-best 40-15 since the club was 6.5 games back and in last place in the division on July 3.

The Storm Chasers will face the Redbirds in the American Conference Championship at Werner Park. Omaha will host Games 1 and 2 of the series this Wednesday and Thursday, with both days having start times of 7:05 p.m., while Games 3-5 will be played at AutoZone Park in Memphis. During the 2014 season, the Storm Chasers and Redbirds split their 16 games at 8-8.

 

Chiefs get a deal done with Alex Smith, signing him to a four year extension. Team hopes he’s the franchise’s quarterback

Alex Smith is locked up for another four years (photo/NFL)

Alex Smith is locked up for another four years (photo/NFL)

The Kansas City Chiefs have signed Alex Smith to a four-year contract worth about $68 million according to several media outlets. Smith threw for a career-best 3,313 yards and 23 touchdowns last year in his first season as the Chiefs’ starter.   Getting a contract done was something hanging over training camp and Smith constantly deflected questions about the situation.

“It was a priority of ours to get this deal done and keep Alex in a Chiefs uniform long-term,” Kansas City general manager John Dorsey said in a statement. “Alex is a proven leader on and off the field. He is a special individual with a lot of ability, and we are fortunate to have him here.”

The 30 year old Smith had one year left on a contract that was set to pay him $7.5 million this season.

Smith showed the maturity to lead this team last season and needed a fresh start away from San Francisco, where the Chiefs sent two second-round draft picks in 2013 and 2014. Smith has one year remaining on his current deal, so the extension keeps him in Kansas City through 2018.

 

Gary Pinkel happy with the win. Marcus Murphy called his touchdown return (VIDEO)