Minor, KC bullpen unable to slow Cleveland

KANSAS CITY — In the first two of their four-game set against Cleveland this week, the Royals have had to go to their bullpen early to hold a slim lead.

And in both games, Cleveland put together big innings against Kansas City relievers.

Josh Staumont allowed three runs in the seventh inning of Tuesday night’s 7-3 loss at Kauffman Stadium, as the Royals dropped their third straight and first two of the seven-game homestand.

Kansas City had a 3-0 lead going into the sixth on Michael A. Taylor’s single in the second, a bizarre play in the third that resulted in Whit Merrifield scoring on Salvador Perez’s RBI single and Perez’s 460-foot solo homer in the fifth. But starter Mike Minor loaded the bases with one out in the sixth.

Manager Mike Matheny went to Greg Holland, who got the ground ball and potential double-play ball he wanted off Franmil Reyes, but Nicky Lopez misread the hop as it bounced into left field for an error and two runs scored. Then, Harold Ramirez lined the tying single to left field. All three runs were earned and charged to Minor, who struck out three and walked three in 5 1/3 innings.