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Colon 'phenomenal' in first big league start

Stepping in for injured Infante, prospect smacks triple and two doubles

Colon 'phenomenal' in first big league start

CLEVELAND -- Christian Colon got his first Major League starting assignment because second baseman Omar Infante came down with lower back stiffness. About an hour before Friday night's game, Colon learned he was in the lineup.

That proved to be fortuitous for the Royals.

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Colon had a triple -- his first big league hit, off right-hander Josh Tomlin -- plus two doubles. He scored three runs and got his first RBI as the Royals thrashed the Indians, 7-1.

"We had a great time. That's what I told myself. Just go out there and enjoy and try to help win this ballgame," Colon said.

Called up just last Monday from Triple-A Omaha, he made his debut on Tuesday night at Minnesota and went 0-for-2 late in the game.

On Friday, Colon tripled to center field in the third inning and doubled to left field in the fifth inning, both off Tomlin, and then doubled down the right-field line against John Axford in the ninth. That double scored Mike Moustakas, who'd defied the Indians' shift by slapping a single to left field.

"That's a phenomenal day for a kid who's coming up and starting his first game in the big leagues," Moustakas said. "It was awesome to watch him do that."

Infante was on the disabled list with a bum back from May 7-26, but he had played all but one game since then. But when Infante reported a stiff back on Friday, manager Ned Yost took a cautious approach.

"It started stiffening up, and that's what happened last time," Yost said. "He played through it and then it locked up. We didn't want that to happen."

Yost believes Infante might be ready to play on Saturday night. If he's not, Colon has demonstrated his credentials with a big game.

"It was a lot of fun. Smiling everywhere," Colon said.

Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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