Ka'aihue packs Hawaiian punch
Rookie hits first Major League home run against White Sox
KANSAS CITY -- The sign in the stands read "Go Kila. Go Big Punch."
In the seventh inning of Saturday's game, Kila Ka'aihue indeed delivered the big punch. The Royals' rookie from Hawaii turned on a Gavin Floyd pitch and hit a moon shot homer off the White Sox right-hander to right that looked off the bat like it was headed for Honolulu. Ka'aihue's first Major League homer prompted the crowd at Kauffman Stadium to implore Ka'aihue to make a curtain call. With a little nudge from some teammates, Ka'aihue responded.
Now Kansas City fans have seen what Double-A Northwest Arkansas and Triple-A Omaha fans saw all summer, when Ka'aihue combined to hit 37 homers at those two Minor League stops.
Ka'aihue got the home run ball back and said he'll keep it in his home to celebrate a special memory from his baseball career .
"The fans have been rooting for me and wanting me to be here," Ka'aihue said. "I'm happy I did it for them. Everything about it was incredible."
Once the towering drive left Ka'aihue's bat, there was no doubt it was gone.
"I'm just so happy and relieved that I got it out of the way," Ka'aihue said. "I just hope I can do it a lot more."
Robert Falkoff is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.