KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The father of Royals pitcher Edinson Volquez died shortly before his son took the mound to start Game 1 of the World Series against the New York Mets, a person familiar with the situation told The Associated Press.
The person, speaking on condition of anonymity Tuesday night because he was not authorized to discuss the matter, said the right-hander was unaware Danio Volquez had passed away in his native Dominican Republic while warming up in the bullpen before the game.
It was not known if Volquez was told before he took the mound.
There was no word on the cause of death, though the 63-year-old Volquez had been dealing with heart disease. It was the elder Volquez who introduced his son to the game.
Edinson Volquez, an 11-year veteran, took the mound as scheduled for his World Series debut. His first pitch to Mets leadoff hitter Curtis Granderson went for a called strike, and the right-hander went on to retire the side in the first inning. He struck out Daniel Murphy, the hottest hitter this post-season, as the crowd inside Kauffman Stadium chanted, "Eddie! Eddie!"
Volquez's father is the third parent of a Royals player to die in the past three months.
Connie Moustakas, the mother of third baseman Mike Moustakas, passed away on Aug. 9 after a battle with cancer. Moustakas honours her every time he steps into the batter's box by scribbling her initials in the dirt with the end of his bat.
Charles Young, the father of Chris Young, died of cancer on Sept. 26 — the day before his son made his first start for Kansas City in two months. Chris Young responded by throwing five no-hit innings before leaving the game to be with his family.
Young is scheduled to start Game 4 of the World Series in New York.
Dave Skretta, The Associated Press