Edinson Volquez threw three hitless innings for the Royals, but the insects caused the biggest buzz. They sent Kansas City manager Ned Yost, members of his coaching staff and fans scurrying early in the exhibition matchup at Surprise Stadium. Yost and his coaches like to sit on folding chairs outside the dugout, and the bees caused them to duck for cover.
Yost said nobody got stung.
"They're not going to mess with you, just don't mess with them," Yost said. "Kind of like the Royals. Don't mess with us, and we won't mess with you.''
The bees were removed in a plastic trash bag after the top of the third inning. Lowell Hutchinson, a retired beekeeper from St. Joseph, Missouri, came out of the stands to assist with gathering them. With the scarcity of honey bees, Yost implored that the bees be saved, not exterminated.
"I said, 'We ain't killing those bees. We better figure something out,'" Yost said. "Luckily, we had a beekeeper from St. Joe here. They had already devised that plan. Just put them in a plastic bag, take them out and let them go. We ain't killing them. There aren't enough bees in the world, boys. We can't be exterminating them."
"They're so important to our environment. They pollinate everything. It doesn't make any sense to panic and kill bees when you don't have to. I am proud the way we handled it."
"They're so important to our environment. They pollenate everything. It doesn't make any sense to panic and kill bees when you don't have to. I am proud the way we handled it."Royals manager Ned Yost
Volquez said he saw Yost rush for the dugout while he was on the mound.
"I'm just glad to be alive,'' Volquez said with a laugh.
Bubba Starling, who hit a two-run, inside-the-park homer for the Royals, said the bees "were crazy."
"They were all over the place," he said. "All the coaches came in until they got that taken care of. There was some actually down in the dugout. The majority of them were out in the on-deck circle."
Rockies starter Jordan Lyles delayed warming up in the third inning when the bees were removed to a loud applause.
"That third inning, the umpires told me to hold off, that they were going to take the bees out," Lyles said. "It didn't affect us on the field, but I'm sure the fans weren't too happy."