Kansas City put pressure on Cleveland in the sixth and eighth innings.
Cleveland’s pitching staff met the challenge, holding Kansas City to two runs in a 3-2 victory on a chilly Friday afternoon. The loss placed Kansas City at 1-4 for the season.
The Royals came out swinging in the opening frame. Third baseman Mike Moustakas grounded out to second, scoring outfielder Jon Jay. First baseman Lucas Duda followed with an RBI single to right, but momentum stopped when Cheslor Cuthbert grounded into a double play.
For the second consecutive start, KC starter Danny Duffy struggled. The left-hander started his day with back-to-back walks. That allowed Cleveland third baseman Jose Ramirez to single in a run. After Duffy’s third walk given up, Michael Brantley singled to right, plating two runs.
A trio of runs was all that was needed by the Indians, but the boys in blue made things interesting down the line. Cleveland starter Carlos Carrasco labored in the sixth, giving up two straight singles with an intentional walk. Carrasco settled down, striking out Duda and forcing Cuthbert to line out to left to close his day.
Reliever Andrew Miller had a rocky start in the eighth, walking Jay and coughing up a single. From there, he struck out the side, allowing Cody Allen to earn the save.
Carrasco gave up five hits and struck out four in the win. KC’s Duffy lasted 5 2/3 innings, giving up three hits, three walks and recording three strikeouts.
Kansas City battles Cleveland Saturday. Pregame starts at 2:30 on Sports Radio 1150 KSAL.