Royals Defeat Tigers In Omaha Ahead Of College World Series
The Royals and Tigers sold out TD Ameritrade Park Thursday night with an announced attendance of 25,454 for the "first big-league game played" at the College World Series venue, according to Sam McDowell of the K.C. STAR. Omaha has been home to the Royals' Triple-A team since '69, and the "pro-Royals crowd saw the team win its first series in two months." Royals 2B Whit Merrifield said, “It was great to see a sellout. I thought they did a great job putting this on" (K.C. STAR, 6/14). Royals manager Ned Yost said, "The energy level was fun. ... Every time I turned around, all I saw was Royals hats and shirts. That was great" (AP, 6/13). ESPN's Karl Ravech noted tickets to the game were a "hot item and went immediately as soon as this game was announced last year." Ravech: "It sold out in a hurry, and now they begin a two-week-plus run of great baseball with the College World Series" ("Tigers-Royals," ESPN, 6/13).
GREAT APPETIZER FOR CWS: In Omaha, Tony Boone notes prior to the game, this year’s CWS teams "joined the Royals and Tigers on the field" for the national anthem. Former CWS stars and MLB HOFers Dave Winfield and Barry Larkin were introduced. Oregon State C Adley Rutschman, who was drafted by the Orioles with the No. 1 overall pick in this year's Draft, was "announced as the Golden Spikes Award winner," the nations top award for an amateur baseball player (OMAHA WORLD-HERALD, 6/14). Also in Omaha, Tom Shatel writes this is "how you start" a CWS, with the Royals and Tigers "playing baseball that counted and leaving footprints in the dirt" for the college teams to follow (OMAHA WORLD-HERALD, 6/14).