Royals Still Perfect
Raul Ibanez and Michael Tucker each belted two-run homers, as Kansas City remained unbeaten with a 5-2 victory over Cleveland at Jacobs Field. The Royals have taken the first two contests of the four-game set and improved to 9-0 on the season.
The Royals extended baseball's best start in 13 years and are the only unbeaten team remaining. Kansas City is the first club since the 1990 Cincinnati Reds to win its first nine games. The Reds went on to win the World Series that season.
Chris George (2-0) worked 5 1/3 innings for the win. He was charged with two runs on seven hits, walked one and struck out three. D.J. Carrasco recorded the final three outs for his first career save.
C.C. Sabathia (0-2) suffered the loss after surrendering three runs on seven hits in 5 1/3 innings. He walked two and fanned six.
Milton Bradley and Brandon Phillips hit solo home runs for the Indians, who fell to 3-7 on the year.
The Royals grabbed a 3-2 advantage with a pair of runs in the sixth. Ken Harvey led off with a single and scored on Ibanez' second home run of the campaign.
In the bottom of the inning, Matt Lawton was hit by a George pitch to open the inning and Josh Bard followed with a grounder through the right side. However, first base umpire Tim Timmons ruled that the ball hit by Bard deflected off Lawton before going into right field. Lawton was out because of the interference and Bard was credited with a single. Jason Grimsley then replaced George and set down Travis Hafner and Phillips to end the frame.
Kansas City tacked on two more runs in the seventh for a 5-2 cushion. Mike DiFelice began the inning with a base hit off David Riske and scored on Tucker's first homer of the season.
Cleveland got the tying run to the plate with two outs in the bottom of the eighth, but Albie Lopez recorded his third strikeout of the inning when he fanned Hafner to end the threat.
The Indians received leadoff homers from Bradley in the first inning and Phillips in the second inning to take a 2-0 lead.
Prior to Phillips' second home run of the season, the Royals threatened in the top of the frame, as they had runners on second and third with one out. However, Sabathia struck out Angel Berroa and retired DiFelice on a foul pop to end the inning.
Kansas City broke through for a run in the fourth to cut the deficit to 2-1. Desi Relaford drew a two-out walk from Sabathia and scored on a double to left by Mendy Lopez. Berroa fanned to end the inning.
Cleveland had an opportunity to score in the fifth, putting runners on first and third with two outs. However, Shane Spencer grounded out to conclude the frame.
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