Kansas City at Cleveland

Kansas City
W: F. Carmona (11-4) L: J. De La Rosa (7-10)
S: J. Borowski (26)
HR: KC - J. Smith (1)   CLE - T. Hafner (15), R. Garko (11)

Carmona lights out in daytime again; Indians handle Royals

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports

CLEVELAND -- Travis Hafner signed a long-term contract and rediscovered his home run swing -- all in a few days.

Hafner had three hits, including a long two-run homer to help Fausto Carmona and the Cleveland Indians defeat the Kansas City Royals 5-3 Sunday.

"I'll take the homer," Hafner said. "Being able to get us an early lead with a home run means a lot."

Hafner's 15th homer after a walk to Victor Martinez made it 2-0 in the first inning against Jorge De La Rosa (7-10).

"For him to get us going was as important as anything," manager Eric Wedge said after the Indians improved baseball's best home record to 33-13 with their seventh win in the past eight games at Jacobs Field.

Cleveland is in a tight race for first place with Detroit in the AL Central despite Hafner not producing at his average of 34 homers, 111 RBI and a .308 batting average the previous three years.

"He's kind of struggled and is still on pace to drive in 100 runs," Martinez said of Hafner, who is hitting .266 with 60 RBI.

The homer was Hafner's second in July and came three days after he signed a four-year, $57 million contract extension. The 436-foot shot went into the second level of seats in right field dubbed "Pronkville" in honor of the slugger who has 132 homers in 4½ seasons in Cleveland.

"Trot Nixon told me in batting practice that if I didn't hit one up there soon they would rename it 'Nixonville,' " Hafner said. "I knew it was gone. I just didn't know how far.

"I felt my swing coming on a couple weeks before the (All-Star) break. I'm feeling more comfortable."

Carmona (11-4) improved to 8-0 with a 1.98 ERA in nine daytime starts. The right-hander allowed two runs over seven innings to win his third straight start.

"Fausto had to work at it. He wasn't as sharp as he is capable of being," Wedge said. "But he got the job done."

Joe Borowski pitched the ninth for his 26th save in 29 chances.

Following Hafner's homer, De La Rosa either walked or struck out each of the next 10 batters -- until Ryan Garko led off the fourth with his 11th homer for a 3-0 lead.

Cleveland loaded the bases on three one-out walks in the third, but De La Rosa struck out Hafner and Jhonny Peralta.

Following Garko's homer, De La Rosa issued a one-out walk to Franklin Gutierrez, then left with a bruised left thumb after 83 pitches in 3 1/3 innings. The lefty had won his three previous starts by a combined score of 30-7.

"I pitched bad," said De La Rosa, adding that he doesn't know how he hurt his thumb. "I had a lot of walks."

During a span of 13 batters from the first inning until the fourth, no Royals player other than De La Rosa and catcher John Buck touched the baseball -- as the Indians got two homers, five walks and struck out six times.

Kansas City scored twice with two outs in the fifth, helped by a throwing error by second baseman Josh Barfield, who threw away a potential inning-ending double play. Billy Butler followed with an RBI double and scored on a single by Ross Gload to make it 3-2.

"We had some opportunities," Royals manager Buddy Bell said. "I thought their kid pitched well. He has good stuff. We just got beat."

Gutierrez had an RBI double and Barfield a sacrifice fly in the sixth to make it 5-2.

Jason Smith homered off Rafael Betancourt to get the Royals within 5-3 in the eighth.


  • Bell ran out to argue with first-base umpire Chad Fairchild, who called out Butler on a close play to end the seventh. Then God Bless America was played over the PA system, so both Bell and Fairchild took off their hats and politely stood alongside each other during the tribute. When the song ended, they resumed their discussion -- which by then had lost all intensity.
  • Royals LHP John Bale pitched two scoreless innings in his first major league appearance since Sept. 18, 2003, with Cincinnati. He had since pitched in the minors and three years in Japan.
  • Garko is batting .424 (14-for-33) during a nine-game hitting streak.
  • De La Rosa is 0-3 with a 7.80 ERA in three starts against Cleveland this season.
  • Royals 3B Alex Gordon went 1-for-2 against Carmona and is hitting .750 (6-for-8) against the right-hander.
Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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Fausto Carmona wins his third straight start, limiting the Royals to two runs over seven innings.  (AP)
Fausto Carmona wins his third straight start, limiting the Royals to two runs over seven innings. (AP)

Players of the Game

T. Hafner
AB 4
R 1
H 3
HR 1

F. Carmona
IP 7.0
H 8
ER 2
BB 2
K 4

Related Video

Kansas City Royals
David DeJesus, CF5000000 .277
Mark Grudzielanek, 2B5010001 .279
Mark Teahen, RF4120000 .289
Billy Butler, DH4111002 .313
Ross Gload, 1B3021100 .262
Alex Gordon, 3B3010111 .231
Jason Smith, SS4111015 .217
Joey Gathright, LF4010000 .315
Jason LaRue, C3000024 .179
   a- Esteban German, PH1000000 .283
a-grounded out for LaRue in the 9th
2B - Billy Butler (7, Carmona)
HR - Jason Smith (1, Betancourt)
RBI - Billy Butler (17), Ross Gload (24), Jason Smith (5)
2-OUT RBI - Billy Butler (5), Ross Gload (8), Jason Smith (1)
Team LOB - 8
Outfield Assists - Mark Teahen 1
Kansas City Royals
Jorge De La Rosa (L,7-10) 3.1233662 5.25
Jimmy Gobble 1.2100010 2.78
David Riske 1322010 2.53
John Bale 2300020 0.00
Pitches-Strikes - Jorge De La Rosa 83-44, Jimmy Gobble 18-10, David Riske 34-26, John Bale 28-20
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jimmy Gobble 1-2, David Riske 1-1, John Bale 1-3
Batters Faced - Jorge De La Rosa 17, Jimmy Gobble 5, David Riske 6, John Bale 9
Cleveland Indians
Grady Sizemore, CF4000123 .279
Casey Blake, 3B3000110 .268
Victor Martinez, C2100200 .321
Travis Hafner, DH4132013 .266
Jhonny Peralta, SS4010033 .283
Ryan Garko, 1B3221102 .304
Jason Michaels, LF4120011 .288
Franklin Gutierrez, RF2011110 .292
Josh Barfield, 2B3001012 .255
2B - Franklin Gutierrez (2, Riske)
HR - Travis Hafner (15, De La Rosa), Ryan Garko (11, De La Rosa)
SF - Josh Barfield (4)
SH - Franklin Gutierrez (2)
RBI - Travis Hafner 2 (60), Ryan Garko (34), Franklin Gutierrez (10), Josh Barfield (40)
2-OUT RBI - Travis Hafner 2 (18)
SB - Grady Sizemore (25, 2nd base off De La Rosa/LaRue), Franklin Gutierrez (3, 2nd base off Gobble/LaRue)
Team LOB - 8
DP - Barfield-Peralta-Garko
E - Josh Barfield (11, Throwing), Ryan Garko (4, Misplayed grounder)
Cleveland Indians
Fausto Carmona (W,11-4) 7822240 3.77
Rafael Betancourt (H,19) 1111001 1.30
Joe Borowski (S,26) 1000000 5.30
Pitches-Strikes - Fausto Carmona 102-67, Rafael Betancourt 16-11, Joe Borowski 13-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Fausto Carmona 14-3, Rafael Betancourt 1-2, Joe Borowski 2-1
Batters Faced - Fausto Carmona 31, Rafael Betancourt 4, Joe Borowski 3
Game Information
Attendance - 29657
Game Time - 3:08
Temperature - 70
Umpires - Home - Larry Young, First Base - Chad Fairchild, Second Base - Ted Barrett, Third Base - Mark Carlson