KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- A person familiar with the situation says the father of Royals pitcher Edinson Volquez died shortly before his son was to start Game 1 of the World Series against the New York Mets.

The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Tuesday night because he was not authorized to discuss the matter.

The person said Volquez was not aware of the passing of 63-year-old Daniel Volquez, who had been dealing with heart disease in the Dominican Republic. His son took the mound for his World Series debut as scheduled to a roar from the crowd inside Kauffman Stadium.

His first pitch to Mets leadoff hitter Curtis Granderson went for a called strike. He pitched a perfect first inning.