The KC Royals scored three runs in the top of the first and never looked back en route to their 8-5 victory in Milwaukee. The two teams combined for 24 hits. Things did get dicey in the ninth.
Alcides Escobar led off the game with a hit by a pitch. He came around to score on Mike Moustakas‘ single on a challenge call that the Royals won. With one out, Eric Hosmer drove in Moose and Alex Gordon capped the scoring with a sac fly.
Lorenzo Cain hit a two-run home run in the top of the fifth, which was needed because Edinson Volquez allowed two runs in the bottom of the inning.
The bottom of the fifth started with a one out hit batter. Jonathan Lucroy doubled in two runs with two outs. Volquez allowed those two runs on six hits and two walks over five innings.
The Royals offense got those two runs right back in the top of the sixth on a Kendrys Morales double play (he pinch-hit) and an Esky single.
After Volquez, Franklin Morales worked around a hit and a walk in the sixth. Ryan Madson pitched a perfect seventh and Jason Frasor struck out two in his perfect 8th inning.
Now to the nail-biting ninth with Greg Holland on the mound. Though it wasn’t a save situation, Holland needed the work, but he got knocked around. He allowed four hits, including two doubles, and a walk. Holland was pulled with the Royals clinging to an 8-5 lead, with runners at second and third base, no outs, and Ryan Braun coming to the plate.
Wade Davis came on to try and earn the save and went 3-0 to Braun before striking him out. Adam Lind then lined out before Davis got Aramis Ramirez to fly out to end the game. Davis picked up his eighth save.
*Former Royals lefty Will Smith pitched a scoreless ninth. He allowed a single to LoCain to start the inning, but then retired the next three hitters.
**The Royals rotation has changed a bit. Chris Young will start the finale on Tuesday in Milwaukee. Joe Blanton will now pitch on Wednesday against the Brewers in Kansas City, with Yordano Ventura pitching the opener against Boston on Friday night. Jeremy Guthrie will continue to start the finale against the Brewers on Thursday at the K.
***The Royals now have eight of the nine leaders for the All-Star Game vote. Second baseman Omar Infante somehow moved into the lead and he rewarded the fans with a 2-for-4 night.