The first of two games between these intradivisional rivals was largely a tale of one pitcher struck with luck and another one cursed by it.
The Royals starter, former Indians' first-round draft pick Jeremy Guthrie, worked around base runners all afternoon, striking out five in 6.2 innings while allowing nine base-runners. While Guthrie was in the ballgame, the Indians stranded seven runners. They wasted another in the top of the eighth as Luke Hochevar worked around a one-out Asdrubal Cabrera double by striking out the side and then squandered another base-runner in the top of the ninth with Hochevar on the rubber when Carlos Santana's bloop single to lead off was followed by a strikeout,, pop foul, and another strikeout. Jason Kipnis also erased himself on the basepaths, getting thrown out by Salvador Perez attempting to steal second, and Cabrera almost got thrown out attempting to stretch a single into the aforementioned double, narrowly missing being gunned down by Jeff Francoeur.
On the other side of the box score, Justin Masterson worked 6.1 innings, striking out nine. He also walked four and allowed nine hits, en route to allowing seven earned runs. Matt Albers did him no favors entering the game in relief only to hit Salvador Perez in the elbow to load the bases and subsequently walk Mike Moustakas, plating a run that was credited to Masterson without allowing a ball to be put in play.
In the first five innings, the Royals pieced together a couple of two-out rallies and Alcides Escobar hit his third home run of the month to put four runs on the board. Jarrod Dyson was the hero early, doubling and singling in the two-out rallies, driving in two runs in the process. Moustakas started each of the two out rallies without lifting the bat from his shoulder, earning(?) two four-pitch walks. He walked three times in total and added another single in what had to be his best start since Toronto in 2008.
The Royals tacked on another five runs in the seventh and eighth innings, embarrassing the visiting Racially Insensitives once they got to the then-gassed Masterson, Albers, and Scott Barnes. Alex Gordon joined Escobar in the dong hanging department with crushed ball to right-center field.
The Royals host the dastardly Clevelanders again this evening with Will Smith hopping on the Greyhound in Omaha yesterday to make the start in Kansas City today.