KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Ervin Santana pitched seven strong innings and the Los Angeles Angels didn't need any late-game heroics Monday, roughing up Luke Hochevar early on the way to a 7-1 win over the Kansas City Royals.
Mike Napoli hit a two-run homer, Juan Rivera and Maicer Izturis each had solo shots off Hochevar (5-3), and Howie Kendrick had two RBIs to help Los Angeles kick off a season-long 14-game road trip with its fifth win in six games.
That was more than enough for Santana (5-3).
The right-hander scattered seven hits, allowing a run-scoring double by Jason Kendall in the fifth inning and little else to win his fourth straight start. He struck out six and has allowed six earned runs the past 29 innings after a shaky start to the season.
Los Angeles won its previous two games in dramatic fashion, getting a winning grand slam from Kendry Morales against Seattle on Saturday, and a three-run game-ender by Kendrick on Sunday.
The Angels were a bit more subdued following Kendrick's winner, waiting on the grass to congratulate him after watching Morales, the team's home run and RBI leader, break his leg during the previous day's at-the-plate swarming.
Handshakes and high-fives were all the Angels needed against Kansas City, a team they've beaten 10 of the last 11 times.
The Royals didn't put up much of a fight, either, going 1-for-8 with runners in scoring position and striking out 11 times to lose for the sixth time in nine games. Kansas City has scored two runs in three games after a season-high 20-hit outburst against Boston Friday night.
Hochevar had been on a roll, pitching eight strong innings against Texas to back up a complete-game win over Cleveland.
This time, he just put the Royals in a hole.
Rivera ended an 0-for-21 slump in the second inning off the right-hander, lifting a 2-0, down-the-middle fastball over the Angels bullpen in left for a solo homer, his seventh. Kendrick made it 2-0 with a run-scoring double two batters later and the Angels kept chipping away at Hochevar.
Izturis added a slicing solo shot in the third inning that dinged off the foul pole in left, Erick Aybar had a run-scoring double in the fifth and Kendrick added an RBI single in the sixth to make it 5-1.
Hochevar gave up five runs on nine hits in seven innings. He had allowed two homers in his previous 60 innings.
Napoli sealed it in the eighth inning with his eighth homer, a two-run shot off Victor Marte for his third hit.
Angels manager Mike Scioscia said Morales' broken leg is still too swollen for surgery and he hopes to have a definitive answer in the next week or so. … Royals DH Jose Guillen broke an 0-for-15 skid with a single off Scot Shields in the ninth inning. He had struck out his previous eight at-bats at Kauffman Stadium. … A grounds crew member made a nifty tackle from behind after a fan ran out onto the field during the seventh-inning stretch.
Powered by WordPress.com VIP