Anderson hits for cycle against D-backs
Right fielder drives in seven, completes feat in four innings
TUCSON, Ariz. -- Brian Anderson had a game to remember and it only took him four innings.
In Friday's 24-9 victory against the D-backs, the Royals' right fielder hit for the cycle, scored three runs and drove in seven runs in his first four at-bats in the first four innings. The Royals led, 17-0, after the first four innings. Anderson finished 5-for-5
Overall, the Royals racked up 27 hits in the offensive explosion.
"We were a little hitterish," Royals manager Trey Hillman said. "We had some good at-bats and took advantage of some pitches out over the plate, but you know what? We hit some good pitches, too."
Anderson, who is from Tucson, hit a two-run triple in the first inning and an RBI double in the second inning. In the third inning, he drove in two more runs with a single to left field. Anderson completed the cycle in the fourth inning with a two-run home run to left field.
"I knew I got the tough one out of the way, the triple is always the tough one, but I really wasn't thinking about [a home run]," Anderson said. "I was thinking about getting a pitch out over the plate that I can drive."
Anderson got the pitch he was looking for and the rest is history. According to Elias, Colorado's Mike Lansing is the only player to hit for the cycle in the first four innings of a regular season game when he accomplished the feat on June 18, 2000 against the D-backs.
"You can't have a much better day than Brian Anderson," Hillman said. "I was actually planning on playing him the majority of the game but I was afraid he would pull something if I left him in there."
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Anderson, who is hitting .407 in Cactus League play, picked up another single in the fifth inning and was taken out of the game. He went 0-for-4 with three strikeouts against Colorado in his last visit to Tucson on March 10.
"My grandma came over this morning and cooked me breakfast, and I was like, 'I stunk it up so bad the last time I was here, can you please cook me a good meal and give me some help?' Because I was absolutely embarrassed to go out there with my last name on my jersey."
The home-cooking worked but Anderson wasn't the only star on offense Friday. Twelve different Royals had at least one hit and eight different players drove in at least one run. Willie Bloomquist, Kila Ka'aihue, Josh Fields -- who also had five RBIs -- and Yuniesky Betancourt each had three hits. Mike Aviles went 4-for-5 with four runs scored.
In a stretch that included the last three innings of Thursday's 16-14 loss against the Padres and the first four innings of Friday's game, the Royals outscored their opponents 27-0. Kansas City tacked on four more runs in the top of the fifth Friday to raise the total to 31 but the D-backs answered with four runs of their own in the bottom of the frame to make the score 21-4.
"That's not a normal day," Anderson said. "The Diamondbacks are a good team and they have some stellar pitching. We could just tell it was one of those days."
Overall, there have been 288 cycles hit in Major League Baseball history. Anderson's cycle count is considerably lower.
"I did it one time in Rookie ball and I think I did it a couple of times on Super Nintendo," he said.
Jesse Sanchez is a national reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.