Vinnie Pasquantino nearly hits for cycle, but KC Royals fall to Padres at home

There was a confirmed “Pasquatch” sighting at Kauffman Stadium on Saturday. And several were in attendance to witness the moment.

In the first inning, Royals first baseman Vinnie Pasquantino blasted a two-run homer on his bobblehead day against the San Diego Padres. Later, he nearly etched his name in franchise history by hitting for the cycle.

Alas, Pasquantino came a triple shy of the cycle. Meanwhile, the Royals fell short in a 7-3 loss to the Padres.

The Royals dropped their third consecutive game and fell to to 35-25 this season. KC has lost six of their last seven games during a cold stretch. KC will try to turn things around in Sunday’s end to the three-game home series.

Pasquantino nearly provided some late-game heroics in the loss. He stepped to the plate with the bases loaded in the seventh inning as the Royals had a chance to reclaim the lead.

Pasquantino, though, struck out against Padres reliever Jeremiah Estrada. He swung through a 99.1-mph fastball to end the inning.

The Padres held onto the late lead and improved to 32-29 this season. Spot starter Randy Vasquez, who replaced Joe Musgrave, picked up the victory.

Vasquez allowed three runs, four hits and registered five strikeouts in five innings. Additionally, the Padres aided him with ample run support in the victory.

Shortstop Ha-Seong Kim recorded two extra-base hits, including a three-run triple. San Diego duo Fernando Tatis Jr. and Kyle Higashioka hit solo homers in the victory.

Royals starter Alec Marsh took the loss. He struggled with his command and allowed five earned runs in five innings.

Missed previous games of the series?

Game 1: Royals’ bullpen collapses in 11-8 loss to Padres

Column: How Royals will approach bullpen needs ahead of 2024 trade deadline

Here are more notables from Saturday’s game:

Alec Marsh evades 5th-inning trouble

Marsh was inefficient against the Padres on Saturday. However, he avoided potential disaster with a little bit of defensive help.

In the fifth inning, Marsh faced a bases-loaded situation. He began the frame by hitting Padres outfielder Jurickson Profar with a 79.5-mph curveball.

Two batters later, Padres second baseman Jake Cronenworth doubled to set up runners on second and third base. Next, Marsh intentionally walked Padres star Manny Machado, which loaded the bases with one out.

Marsh was stuck in a jam. As the Royals bullpen began to stir, he faced Padres designated hitter Donovan Solano in a key spot in the game.

And Marsh didn’t back down. He induced Solano to hit into a double play by rolling over a 94.1-mph sinker towards second baseman Nick Loftin.

Loftin fielded the baseball and tossed it to shortstop Bobby Witt Jr. to begin a 4-6-3 double play. The Padres were turned away without adding to their two-run lead.

What’s next on the KC Royals’ schedule?

The Royals conclude their weekend series against the Padres. On Sunday, Royals southpaw Cole Ragans will look to snap the club’s losing skid at Kauffman Stadium.

Ragans owns a 3.36 ERA in 12 starts this season. He has allowed three or fewer runs in six of his last seven outings. The Padres are expected to start right-hander Michael King in the series finale.