KANSAS CITY (Reuters) - Kansas City starter Edinson Volquez pitched six innings of Game One of the World Series on Tuesday only hours after the death of his father.
However, it was unclear whether Volquez found out the news before taking the mound against the New York Mets.
Volquez left the stadium after being taken out of the game and did not speak to reporters.
Media reports surfaced just before game time that Daniel Volquez, 63, had died of heart complications back home in the Dominican Republic.
Kansas City manager Ned Yost said the information had been kept from Volquez, at the request of his family, until after he had finished pitching.
But team mate Chris Young said he had been told that Volquez found out before the game.
Young, who is slated to start Game Four, was told by Royals manager Ned Yost that he would have been the starting pitcher had Volquez been unable to play.
“We found out about it before the game and the wishes of the family was ‘let Eddie pitch’, so I ... didn’t want him to hear about it,” Yost told reporters after the Royals won 5-4 in 14 innings.
“I was keeping my eye on him and he was fine. He didn’t know. And I guess after the game was when he found out.”
But Young, speaking later on the MLB Network after pitching the final three innings to register the Game One win, had a different story.
“I heard originally he (Volquez) did not know and then I’ve heard in the clubhouse post game he did know and still took the ball and went out there,” Young said.
“Ned gave me a little warning before the game that they might need me to start if Edinson felt like he couldn’t go tonight. He came out, and was just tremendous, and gave us a chance to win.
“All of us were inspired by that. Talk about the courage and the guts to go out and do that, and the focus, it’s just tremendous.”
Young can empathize with Edinson after losing his own father recently.
“Words can’t describe my pain for Edinson tonight,” he continued.
“I went through something similar about a month ago when my dad passed away. I felt like I needed to take the ball, felt like it was what my dad wanted me to do, go out and pitch and also I felt an obligation to my team mates to not let them down. I think Eddie (also felt that way) tonight.”
Reporting by Andrew Both in Cary, North Carolina; Editing by Larry Fine