Game of ‘what ifs’ doesn’t go Royals’ way

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OAKLAND — Salvador Perez’s power pushed the Royals back into Friday night’s game, as the veteran catcher launched homers in consecutive at-bats for his third two-homer game of the season, but the A’s wound up with the final say.

Elvis Andrus ripped an RBI single against Scott Barlow, and Matt Chapman slid into home safely — despite a 91.5 mph throw from Jarrod Dyson in right field — to send the Royals to a 4-3 walk-off loss at the Coliseum, splitting the first two games of the four-game set.

What was a 3-0 Royals deficit late in the game turned into a close and wild game that, with the benefit of hindsight, left the Royals wondering “what if” at a few key moments.

What if Andrew Benintendi’s glove had landed firmly on home plate in the eighth inning? The left fielder walked after Perez’s second homer of the night tied the game, and with two outs, Benintendi went from first to home on Hunter Dozier’s single to right-center field. Benintendi hesitated around third base but bolted home and looked to beat the throw … only to have his oven mitt glove hover over the plate as catcher Aramis Garcia applied the tag.

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