The Kansas City Royals beat the Baltimore Orioles 1-0 and what stood out the most was Danny Duffy takes his perfect game effort into the 7th inning before Adam Jones ruined a great day for him by hitting a single that didn’t really help his team.
Duffy struck out only two batters in the process, giving up two hits before paving way for Wade Davis and Greg Holland to close out the game. The Royals were bad on offense (4-of-28), but the Orioles were much worse (3-for-30) thanks to Duffy’s best game in his career, picking up his second win of the season and his ERA improving to 1.42. This was only the third start this season for the 25-year old.
The lone bit of offense came in the first inning: A 2-out RBI from Billy Butler, whose single helped Norichika Aoki score the only run of the game. Aoki, leading off for the Royals, was the only player with more than one hit in the pitcher’s duel that developed between Duffy and Bud Norris. Norris made his mistake very early on, and it turned out to be the costly one with the Orioles’ bats being quelled by Duffy and those coming after him. It was the fourth loss this season for Norris, giving up four hits while walking one and striking out another.
You keep thinking, ‘Boy, he’s got really good stuff. He gets through the fourth and the fifth and into the sixth and you think, ‘Boy, he’s got really, really good stuff.’ The story of the day is about Duffy. That was unbelievable. That gives you a glimpse of what he could be like every time out. I heard somebody say this is the type for, like, a perfect game. Right after that, somebody said, ‘Jonesy is about to rip one right here.’
And despite the perfect game bid, things got quite tense in the final inning. The Orioles got a hit and two walks out of Holland, but the closer, who has blown only one save so far this season, struck out three during his ninth inning. Manager Ned Yost was ejected but eventually nerves didn’t get the best of the Royals, winning their first game after two losses to the Orioles in the four-game series, and improving to 21-21.
Duffy is the story to end with. He missed most of last season due to the usual pitcher’s surgery, and began this one in the bullpen. But he was touted as a big talent when he was younger and this kind of performance is just another one that adds up to his body work, proving he is capable and more of being a starting pitcher in the majors.