After making things interesting in the eighth inning, the Royals fell to the Cleveland Guardians, 7-3. It was Kansas City’s fifth loss of the road trip.
As has happened many times this season, a Royals starter allowed a run in the first inning. With one out and a base open, Jon Heasley threw a hittable pitch to the league-leader in RBIs — Jose Ramíez. The Cleveland slugger promptly ripped an RBI-single to center field to make it 1-0.
Kansas City managed to answer back in the top of the third on a solo shot from Emmanuel Rivera. The 420-foot blast was Rivera’s fourth of the season.
Heasley’s command got him in trouble, again, in the bottom of the fifth. For the second time on the night, Ramírez strutted to the plate with a base open. On a 3-2 count, Heasley challenged him with a fastball — which was ripped over the wall in right field to give the Guardians a two-run lead.
Heasley responded well and fired a scoreless frame in the sixth — his final inning of the night. The big, right-hander became the first Royal starter to throw at least six innings on the road trip.
Arodys Viscaíno made his Royals debut in the seventh inning and quickly sat down Cleveland 1-2-3. Two of his pitches were clocked at 100 mph on the radar gun.
In the top of the eighth, Kansas City created some noise. Nicky Lopez led off the inning with a single, Whit Merrifield doubled him home and Andrew Benintendi did the same — tying the game back up at 3-3.
However, despite loading the bases later in the inning, the Royals couldn’t take their first lead. Carlos Santana popped up to second base to end the threat.
In the home half, the Guardians made the Royals pay. Collin Snider, who has struggled of late, allowed a go-ahead, three-run bomb to Andrés Gimenez. Foster Griffin couldn’t limit the damage and Cleveland added one more run before the end of the frame.
The Royals, 16-31, take on Cleveland for Game 2 tomorrow. Daniel Lynch will square off with Cal Quantrill. First pitch is at 5:10 p.m. CT.