|Cleveland (2-4) «||7||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||8||11||0|
|Kansas City (3-4)||1||0||0||2||0||0||0||0||0||3||12||1|
He had two of `em in the first inning alone Friday.
The Indians' anemic offense broke loose against Luke Hochevar and the Royals. Cleveland pounded out seven runs in the opening frame, and Asdrubal Cabrera tacked on a ninth-inning homer for good measure in an 8-3 victory that spoiled Kansas City's home opener.
"That's the way the game goes," Indians manager Manny Acta said, almost shrugging in his chair. "Water usually goes to the level it's supposed to be. I knew those guys would bat better, and the first inning was a great example of that."
The seven runs allowed by Hochevar (1-1) in the first inning matched the number of runs that Kansas City starters had allowed during a six-game road trip to begin the season.
"You couldn't ask for a better way to start off," Kipnis said.
Derek Lowe (2-0) gave up three runs and 11 hits in 6 2-3 innings for Cleveland. The 38-year-old right-hander routinely worked out of trouble, getting help from a pair of double plays that kept Kansas City from mounting much of a comeback.
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"When you're pitching on the road in the other team's home opener, there's going to be a lot of buzz," Lowe said. "To sort of silence them right away, you can't ask for much more."
Hochevar's miserable start got a whole lot worse in the fourth inning, when he took a liner off his left ankle hit by Cleveland slugger Carlos Santana.
The right-hander went down in a heap as the ball caromed to first base for the final out of the inning. Team officials rushed out to tend to Hochevar, who put almost no weight on his ankle while being helped to the dugout by manager Ned Yost and trainer Nick Kenney.
The team said that Hochevar had a "left medial ankle contusion" -- or, a really bad bruise. X-rays taken at the ballpark came back negative and he is day to day.
"When it hit him, I was real nervous. It got him solid," Yost said. "I had some fears there it might have fractured his leg, but the X-rays came up negative."
Yost said he's not sure whether Hochevar will make his next scheduled start.
"We'll see," Yost said. "It's five days away."
The first inning was a revelation for Cleveland, which batted just .176 during a miserable 1-4 start that even prompted management to work out a deal with veteran outfielder Johnny Damon to provide some eventual pop in the Indians' punchless lineup.
Perhaps the Indians jumped to some conclusions.
Brantley snapped a 0-for-15 skid with a leadoff single, and Cabrera's double and Choo's two-run single put an early jolt in the Indians' struggling offense.
Shelley Duncan and Casey Kotchman added back-to-back singles later in the first inning, and Kipnis brought both in with a shot to center that center fielder Jarrod Dyson -- called up to replace the injured Lorenzo Cain -- misjudged in the wind as he approached the warning track.
Brantley's RBI double in his second at-bat of the inning gave Cleveland a 7-0 lead.
"It's a funny game," Acta said with a wry smile. "That inning was a pretty good indication that these guys, they're better than that."
Lowe and the Indians' bullpen kept the Royals in check the rest of the way.
"We didn't get off to the start we wanted," Hosmer said, "but it's a long season, and we haven't played our best baseball yet."
|Asdrubal Cabrera goes 2 for 5 with a homer and two runs scored as the Indians spoil the Royals' home opener. (US Presswire)|
|Players of the Game|
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|Michael Brantley, CF||5||1||2||1||0||1||2||.136|
|Asdrubal Cabrera, SS||5||2||2||1||0||0||1||.250|
|Shin-Soo Choo, RF||4||1||2||2||1||2||0||.227|
|Carlos Santana, C||5||0||1||0||0||2||1||.208|
|Travis Hafner, DH||5||0||0||0||0||1||3||.200|
|Shelley Duncan, LF||3||1||1||1||1||1||1||.300|
|Aaron Cunningham, LF||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.143|
|Casey Kotchman, 1B||4||1||1||0||0||0||0||.120|
|Jason Kipnis, 2B||4||1||1||2||0||1||1||.120|
|Jack Hannahan, 3B||3||1||1||1||1||0||0||.316|
|2B - Michael Brantley (2, Hochevar), Asdrubal Cabrera (2, Hochevar)|
|3B - Jason Kipnis (1, Hochevar)|
|HR - Asdrubal Cabrera (2, Herrera)|
|RBI - Michael Brantley (1), Asdrubal Cabrera (2), Shin-Soo Choo 2 (2), Shelley Duncan (3), Jason Kipnis 2 (4), Jack Hannahan (5)|
|2-OUT RBI - Michael Brantley (1), Shelley Duncan (1), Jason Kipnis 2 (4), Jack Hannahan (5)|
|SB - Shin-Soo Choo (2, 2nd base off Hochevar/Quintero), Jason Kipnis (1, 2nd base off Teaford/Quintero)|
|Team LOB - 6|
|DP - Kipnis-A. Cabrera-Kotchman, Kipnis-A. Cabrera-Kotchman, Kipnis-Kotchman|
|Derek Lowe (W,2-0)||6.2||11||3||3||0||2||0||1.98|
|Tony Sipp (H,1)||0.1||0||0||0||0||0||0||18.00|
|WP - Derek Lowe (1), Tony Sipp (1)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Derek Lowe 92-59, Tony Sipp 2-1, Joe Smith 18-11, Vinnie Pestano 16-11|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Derek Lowe 8-8, Tony Sipp 1-0, Joe Smith 1-0, Vinnie Pestano 1-0|
|Batters Faced - Derek Lowe 29, Tony Sipp 1, Joe Smith 4, Vinnie Pestano 3|
|Kansas City Royals|
|Jarrod Dyson, CF||5||1||1||0||0||0||2||.200|
|Jeff Francoeur, RF||4||0||2||0||0||0||0||.360|
|Eric Hosmer, 1B||4||0||1||1||0||0||2||.207|
|Billy Butler, DH||4||1||1||0||0||1||1||.286|
|Alex Gordon, LF||3||0||2||1||1||1||1||.160|
|Yuniesky Betancourt, 2B||4||1||2||0||0||0||1||.357|
|Mike Moustakas, 3B||4||0||1||1||0||0||3||.174|
|Humberto Quintero, C||3||0||0||0||0||0||1||.364|
|a- Mitch Maier, PH||1||0||0||0||0||1||0||.143|
|Alcides Escobar, SS||4||0||2||0||0||2||0||.259|
|a-struck out for Quintero in the 9th|
|2B - Billy Butler (4, Lowe), Mike Moustakas (2, Lowe)|
|RBI - Eric Hosmer (5), Alex Gordon (3), Mike Moustakas (3)|
|2-OUT RBI - Mike Moustakas (1)|
|Team LOB - 7|
|DP - Betancourt-Escobar-Hosmer|
|E - Yuniesky Betancourt (1, Misplayed grounder)|
|Kansas City Royals|
|Luke Hochevar (L,1-1)||4||9||7||7||1||3||0||7.84|
|WP - Luke Hochevar (1)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Luke Hochevar 65-45, Everett Teaford 71-43, Kelvin Herrera 15-12|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Luke Hochevar 5-4, Everett Teaford 5-4|
|Batters Faced - Luke Hochevar 22, Everett Teaford 15, Kelvin Herrera 4|
|Attendance - 40230|
|Game Time - 2:39|
|Temperature - 66|
|Umpires - Home - Paul Emmel, First Base - Gary Darling, Second Base - Jerry Meals, Third Base - Lance Barrett|