SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Brandon Wood's two-run homer in the ninth inning gave the Royals a 4-2 walk-off victory over the Rangers in Cactus League action on Saturday at Surprise Stadium.
Wood, a non-roster infielder, connected off Rangers right-hander Jake Brigham. Salvador Perez drew a one-out walk and was replaced by pinch-runner Anthony Seratelli. Wood drove a 2-2 pitch into the left-field bullpen.
There was a moment of confusion for Wood as he rounded first base because the ball bounced off the back wall of the bullpen and returned to the playing field.
"I saw the ball on the field and I thought it was a double and I didn't want to jog around the bases with a ball off the wall," Wood said. "I've seen that, and it's not pretty."
Rangers right-hander Randy Wells, a candidate for the No. 5 rotation spot, gave up three hits and one run in his two innings. Mike Moustakas led off the Royals' second inning with a single, took third on David Lough's single and scored as George Kottaras rapped into a double play.
Guillermo Moscoso, the Royals' starter, pitched two scoreless innings, but Francisley Bueno yielded two runs in the third. Aaron Cunningham's leadoff single preceded Ian Kinsler's RBI double. Kinsler moved around on two groundouts, crossing the plate on David Murphy's roller to first.
Left-hander Michael Kirkman, trying to win a job in the Rangers' bullpen, had an impressive two innings, retiring six of seven hitters, including three on strikeouts. If he can win a roster spot, it would make it easier for the Rangers to move Robbie Ross into the rotation.
"You always want to come out throwing strikes and getting quick outs," Kirkman said. "It was extremely constructive. I still have stuff to work on to get consistent, but it's something to build off. I'm excited about it."
The Royals pulled even, 2-2, against Evan Meek in the fifth. Kottaras led off with a single, stole second and took third on catcher Jose Felix's throwing error. Kottaras scored as third baseman Mike Olt booted Jarrod Dyson's grounder.
Royals left-hander Donnie Joseph, obtained last year in the deal that sent reliever Jonathan Broxton to the Reds, struck out all three batters he faced in the seventh inning. Veteran Dan Wheeler, a non-roster right-hander, also pitched a perfect inning with one strikeout.
Up next for Royals: Right-hander Luis Mendoza, competing for the fifth-starter job and prepping for the World Baseball Classic, gets his first start at 2:05 p.m. CT on Sunday against the Rangers. Because of his Winter League work in Mexico, Mendoza is ready to throw 50 to 70 pitches. Left-hander John Lamb gets to exhibit his surgically repaired elbow and relievers Tim Collins, Kelvin Herrera and Louis Coleman also are set to work.
Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less