Shin-Soo Choo drilled a walk-off home run in the 10th inning to lift the Texas Rangers past the Kansas City Royals 4-3 Saturday afternoon at Globe Life Park in Arlington, Texas.
The Rangers, who lead the four-game series 2-1, improved to 5-1 in extra-inning games this season. The Royals dropped to 2-4 in extras.
Choo homered for the second straight game and eighth time this season. His opposite-field shot off Kevin McCarthy (3-2) to left was also the 176th home run of his career, breaking a tie with Hideki Matsui for the most among Asian-born players.
Alex Claudio (3-2) pitched the 10th for Texas and picked up the win.
Texas starter Bartolo Colon made his first start since his 45th birthday on Thursday, and though he wasn’t particular sharp early, the big righty racked up another quality start.
Colon gave the Rangers a chance by lasting seven innings and giving up three runs, all coming in the third. The Royals did rough up Colon on four hits in the third, the big blow being a two-run double by Whit Merrifield.
Texas got a run back in the bottom of the inning on a double by Isiah Kiner-Falefa off Royals starter Ian Kennedy. Joey Gallo nearly tied it in the fourth with a towering drive that hit the top of the wall in center to score Jurickson Profar.
Kennedy didn’t factor into the decision either after allowing two runs on five hits in five innings. The right-hander struck out four and walked three.
Brad Keller relieved Kennedy to open the sixth and gave up the tying run. Ronald Guzman knotted it at 3-3 with a two-out double to plate Gallo.
The Rangers had a chance to take the lead in the eighth after Profar doubled with one out, but reliever Tim Hill nailed down the last two outs.
The Royals received bad news before the game as starter Eric Skoglund went on the disabled list with a left ulnar collateral ligament sprain, an injury that’s often a precursor to Tommy John surgery. Skoglund will undergo an MRI after the Royals return to Kansas City.
The Rangers could be getting Matt Moore back in the rotation next week, depending on how the left-hander recovers from Saturday’s bullpen session.
The series ends Sunday afternoon with Texas sending Cole Hamels (3-4, 3.38 ERA) to the hill and Kansas City countering with Jason Hammel (1-5, 5.70)
—Field Level Media