Royals outlast Rays behind five-run sixthMay 2, 2013 - 5:44 AM
Jeff Francoeur capped the big inning with a two-run single and Alex Gordon, Billy Butler and Mike Moustakas each plated a run in Kansas City's second straight win in this three-game set.
Elliot Johnson added a solo homer and Bruce Chen (2-0) picked up the win with two shutout innings of relief. Greg Holland notched his seventh save with a perfect ninth inning.
Tampa Bay couldn't hold onto an early five-run lead, receiving a shaky effort out of starter Jeremy Hellickson before Jake McGee (0-2) was tagged for all five runs during Kansas City's big sixth inning.
Luke Scott went 3-for-3 with a solo homer, two RBI and two runs scored, Matt Joyce homered for the second straight day, James Loney drove in a pair and Evan Longoria fell a home run short of the cycle, going 3-for-5 with two runs scored.
"We pitched well in the first week or two, we didn't hit. Now we're hitting well and we can't seem to hold the lead," said Joyce.
Kansas City trailed 6-1 after Scott's homer to start the fourth, but Gordon contributed an RBI single in the bottom half and the Royals cut their deficit to two in the fifth before breaking through with a five-run sixth inning.
Butler doubled to begin the fifth and scored two batters later on Cain's triple. Moustakas' sac fly then brought the Royals within 6-4 and they would bat around in the sixth to take the lead.
"We just stayed within ourselves and kept pecking away," said Butler.
McGee replaced Hellickson on the hill to start the frame and quickly loaded the bases by giving up three singles. Kansas City received an RBI groundout from Butler and then tied the game on Eric Hosmer's hit past shortstop Yunel Escobar.
Cain then lifted a soft fly ball into left to put the Royals in front, 7-6, and McGee's walk to Moustakas loaded the bases and ended his night. Kyle Farnsworth took the mound and Francoeur ripped a base hit up the middle to plate a pair and give Kansas City a three-run cushion.
Tampa Bay didn't go quietly, pushing two runs across in the seventh on RBI singles from Loney and Scott off Royals reliever Tim Collins, but ultimately would fall short. Aaron Crow took the mound after Scott's hit and got Jose Lobaton to ground out with a runner on second to end the inning.
The Rays failed to get a runner on base the final two innings.
Joyce and Ben Zobrist hit back-to-back solo homers in the first and the Rays tacked on two more in the second, with Kelly Johnson contributing an RBI double and Desmond Jennings adding a sacrifice fly for a 4-0 lead.
In the third, Longoria's hit into left got past a diving Gordon and went for a triple. Loney followed and lined a single to center to make it 5-0 Rays, but the Royals countered in the bottom half of the frame on Elliot Johnson's leadoff homer.
Kansas City hasn't scored a run in the first inning over its last eight games ... Hellickson gave up four runs on nine hits over five innings of work ... Kansas City starter Luis Mendoza was tagged for six runs on seven hits over four innings ... Tampa Bay was 4-for-9 with runners in scoring position.
- TAMPA BAY: 8
KANSAS CITY: 9
May 1 11:28 PM
- Luke Scott singled to left scoring Evan Longoria. On the play, Yunel Escobar advances to second. Runners on first and second with two outs and Jose Lobaton due up.
Rays 8, Royals 9 Top 7, 2 OutsMay 1 10:48 PM
- James Loney singled to pitcher scoring Ben Zobrist. Runners on first and second with one out and Yunel Escobar due up.
Rays 7, Royals 9 Top 7, 1 OutMay 1 10:43 PM
- Jeff Francoeur singled to center scoring Eric Hosmer and Lorenzo Cain. On the play, Mike Moustakas advances to second. Runners on first and second with two outs and Salvador Perez due up.
Rays 6, Royals 9 Bot 6, 2 OutsMay 1 10:32 PM
- Lorenzo Cain singled to left scoring Alcides Escobar. On the play, Eric Hosmer advances to third. Runners on first and third with two outs and Mike Moustakas due up.
Rays 6, Royals 7 Bot 6, 2 OutsMay 1 10:25 PM
- Eric Hosmer reached first on Yunel Escobar's fielding error scoring Alex Gordon. On the play, Alcides Escobar advances to third. Runners on first and third with two outs and Lorenzo Cain due up.
Rays 6, Royals 6 Bot 6, 2 OutsMay 1 10:23 PM
- Billy Butler grounded out pitcher to first scoring Salvador Perez. On the play, Alcides Escobar advances to second and Alex Gordon advances to third. Runners on second and third and with two outs and Eric Hosmer due up.
Rays 6, Royals 5 Bot 6, 2 OutsMay 1 10:20 PM
- Mike Moustakas sacrifice fly out to center scoring Lorenzo Cain. None on with two outs and Jeff Francoeur due up.
Rays 6, Royals 4 Bot 5, 2 OutsMay 1 9:52 PM
- Lorenzo Cain tripled to right center scoring Billy Butler. Runner on third with one out and Mike Moustakas due up.
Rays 6, Royals 3 Bot 5, 1 OutMay 1 9:51 PM
- Alex Gordon singled to right scoring Jeff Francoeur. On the play, Salvador Perez advances to third. Runners on first and third with two outs and Alcides Escobar due up.
Rays 6, Royals 2 Bot 4, 2 OutsMay 1 9:32 PM
- Luke Scott lead-off Home Run (1) to right. Jose Lobaton due up.
Rays 6, Royals 1 Top 4, 0 OutsMay 1 9:18 PM
- Elliot Johnson lead-off Home Run (1) to right. Alex Gordon due up.
Rays 5, Royals 1 Bot 3, 0 OutsMay 1 9:00 PM
- James Loney singled to center scoring Evan Longoria. Runner on first with one out and Yunel Escobar due up.
Rays 5, Royals 0 Top 3, 1 OutMay 1 8:56 PM
- Desmond Jennings sacrifice fly out to center scoring Jose Lobaton. On the play, Kelly Johnson advances to third. Runner on third with two outs and Matt Joyce due up.
Rays 4, Royals 0 Top 2, 2 OutsMay 1 8:42 PM
- Kelly Johnson doubled to right scoring Luke Scott. On the play, Jose Lobaton advances to third. Runners on second and third with one out and Desmond Jennings due up.
Rays 3, Royals 0 Top 2, 1 OutMay 1 8:39 PM
- Ben Zobrist one-out, solo Home Run (3) to right. Evan Longoria due up.
Rays 2, Royals 0 Top 1, 1 OutMay 1 8:15 PM
- Matt Joyce one-out, solo Home Run (6) to right. Ben Zobrist due up.
Rays 1, Royals 0 Top 1, 1 OutMay 1 8:14 PM
- TAMPA BAY: 0
KANSAS CITY: 0
Top 1, 0 Outs
May 1 8:11 PM
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