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Broxton overpowering in first save

The Sports Xchange

RHP Jonathan Broxton had been there, done that, but whether he could do it again was a point at issue.

The Royals signed Broxton, a former Dodgers closer, to a one-year contract on Nov 30 to set up RHP Joakim Soria. However, when Soria went down with an elbow injury that would require Tommy John surgery, Broxton inherited the Kansas City closing job.

Broxton was a dominating closer for the Dodgers in 2009-10, saving 58 games and was an All-Star selection both seasons. Last year he logged just seven saves, had a 5.68 ERA and did not pitch after May 3 because of an elbow injury. He had surgery on Sept. 19 to remove a bone spur and loose fragments.

There were questions whether Broxton could work back-to-back days -- he didn't in spring training -- and whether he would ever be dominating again after the injury and a sub-par 2011 season.

Broxton answered those questions Sunday with his first Royals save. After throwing 19 pitches Saturday, Broxton was summoned in the ninth after RHP Aaron Crow gave up a single to Howie Kendrick and walked Albert Pujols to start the inning.

He entered at Anaheim to chants of "Dodger reject." He quickly rejected any Angel hopes of a comeback.

Broxton struck out Torii Hunter, Vernon Wells and Kendry Morales, throwing 11 strikes in 14 pitches, to preserve the victory as the Royals won the final two games of the series after being shutout 5-0 in the season opener.

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