The Reds hit back-to-back-to-back homers on three consecutive pitches from Jeff Samardzija in the first inning of Sunday afternoon’s game against the Giants. Joey Votto led off the game with a single. Eugenio Suárez followed up by swinging at a second-pitch four-seam fastball, drilling it to right field for a two-run homer. On Samardzija’s next pitch, an 87 MPH cutter, Jesse Winker hit another homer out to center field. And on Samardzija’s very next pitch, an 84 MPH slider, Derek Dietrich made it back-to-back-to-back with a homer to right field.
Coincidentally, the dingers marked the ninth homers of the season for all three players. That’s some nice early run support for starter Luis Castillo.
MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan reports that the Royals and outfielder Alex Gordon are “getting close” to an agreement on a one-year contract. Terms of the deal aren’t yet known, but the Royals could make it official within the next few days.
Gordon, who turns 36 years old next month, hit .266/.345/.396 with 13 home runs and 76 RBI over 633 plate appearances with the Royals this past season. His offense has waned, owning an adjusted OPS of 84 since 2016 (100 is average), but he still plays decent defense.
Gordon has spent all 13 years of his major league career with the Royals. With the club in a rebuilding phase, he will serve as the clubhouse leader and be a mentor to younger players on the roster.