January 29, 2023

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Witt (436-ft. HR) sets tone as KC youth shines

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Melendez homers in second straight game
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KANSAS CITY — For the first time in the Major Leagues, the Royals’ top two prospects and keys to their future success homered in the same game.

Bobby Witt Jr. and MJ Melendez both went deep in the Royals’ 6-2 win over the White Sox at Kauffman Stadium on Wednesday night, evening the five-game series ahead of Thursday’s finale and winning back-to-back games for the first time since April 19-20.

With the score tied 1-1 in the third inning, White Sox starter Lucas Giolito hung a curveball to Witt, who crushed it to left-center field, nearly splashing it into the fountains. The ball came off Witt’s bat at 109 mph and traveled a Statcast-projected 436 feet.

All four of Witt’s home runs this season have been 415 feet or longer: 417 feet, 427 feet and the last two coming in at 436 feet.

A few innings later, it was Melendez’s turn. First, he singled in the sixth inning and race from first to home on Emmanuel Rivera’s go-ahead triple. Then, with the Royals up two in the eighth, Melendez jumped on a first-pitch cutter from White Sox reliever Ryan Burr.

It carried to the same place Witt’s homer did to left-center, albeit a few feet shorter at 428 feet. Melendez has now homered in back-to-back nights, coming off his first career blast on Tuesday.

The Royals’ win backed righty Zack Greinke’s solid start, allowing two runs in 5 2/3 innings.

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