The KC Royals had a chance to get a lead over the Cleveland Indians for second place in the American League Central. Instead, they saw their series winning streak come to an end as they lost to the Indians, 6-3 in the series finale.
Luis Mendoza was cruising along, as he only walked one through four innings. The first hit came to lead off the fifth, a solo homerun by Michael Brantley. But Mendoza recovered and retired the next three hitters.
Then he fell apart in the 6th inning.
Drew Stubbs singled to start the inning and Michael Bourn walked. Former Royal Mike Aviles singled to drive in Stubbs to tie the game at 2-2. After a coaching visit, Mendoza allowed a bunt base hit by Jason Kipnis before walking Carlos Santana to drive in the go ahead run.
That ended Mendoza‘s night and once again, in came lefty Tim Collins. He allowed a Brantley sac fly (just like last night) and a Mark Reynolds single to load the bases. Collins rebounded to escape the jam without allowing another run.
Manager Ned Yost once again went to Kelvin Herrera in the 7th inning and he once again struggled.
With one out, Bourn doubled and stole third base. He scored on an Aviles sac fly. After a walk, he recovered to just allow that one run.
Brantley homered to lead off the eighth against Luke Hochevar to increase the Indians lead to 6-2.
In the ninth against Joe Smith, the Royals put together a rally with one out. Eric Hosmer doubled in a run and with Salvador Perez at the plate, it looked as though the Royals might make the comeback. Instead, Perez grounded out to third base. Hosmer made a base running blunder and was thrown out trying to move up to third base to end the game.
Is it just me or are the Royals running themselves out of victories?
The Royals will enjoy Thursday off as they head home to Kauffman Stadium to play the Chicago White Sox. Jeremy Guthrie gets the ball in the opener against Hector Santiago.