KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Just about the only person at Kauffman Stadium that thought the Indians’ Jose Ramirez was safe at first base on a crucial play in the eighth inning were the umpires.
Not Royals manager Ned Yost, who said he was "shocked" when the call by first base umpire Bob Davidson stood through a nearly 3-minute review. Not first baseman Eric Hosmer, who said he was "100 percent" certain that Ramirez was out. Not more than 30,000 fans who cheered when the replay was shown on the massive crown-shaped video board in center field.
Not even Cleveland manager Terry Francona, who almost sheepishly acknowledged of the would-be double play: "I thought maybe it was going to get overturned."
Instead, the call came down from an umpire in New York that Ramirez was safe, leaving the Indians with one out in the inning. It proved to be a critical decision minutes later when Michael Brantley hit a two-out double to center, spurring the Indians to a 2-1 victory Tuesday night.
"I was shocked when they called him safe (on replay)," Yost said. "I don’t know what they were looking at. On the angle showed on the big screen, he definitely looked out."
It all began when Wade Davis (2-1) was summoned in the eighth to keep the game tied.
He walked Michael Bourn to lead off the inning, but Ramirez appeared to ground into a double play moments later. When the call stood, so did Ramirez — right on first base.
Jason Kipnis followed by grounding into a fielder’s choice — second baseman Omar Infante bobbled the ball to scuttle another potential double play — and Carlos Santana worked a full-count walk, all before Brantley ripped his go-ahead single to center field.
It was the first run Davis yielded this season.
"He’s a great pitcher. He didn’t have an ERA for a reason," Brantley said. "I knew he was going to make pitches. I was just waiting for something I could hit."
Brantley made a winner of Carlos Carrasco (7-4), who allowed five hits over seven innings to win his third straight start. The big right-hander struck out eight while dominating Kansas City for the second time in a month.
Cody Allen handled a perfect ninth for his 12th save as the Indians won for the 11th time in 14 games. AL Central rival Kansas City lost for the sixth time in its last seven.
Most of the game amounted to a showdown between Carrasco and Jeremy Guthrie.
Carrasco was hardly a surprise. He had allowed three runs over 14 innings in winning his last two starts, and was facing a Royals offense that has now scored seven runs in its last six losses.
Guthrie was the more surprising half of the pitcher’s duel.
The veteran had given up a career-high 11 runs, including four homers, while retiring three last Monday at Yankee Stadium. Thirteen of the 16 batters he faced reached base.
Bouncing back against the Indians, Guthrie allowed two hits in 5 2/3 innings: Moss’s home run on a full-count pitch in the fourth and a double by Santana in the sixth.
At that point, Yost turned the game over to his bullpen. Franklin Morales and Kelvin Herrera got the game to Davis, whose long scoreless streak finally came to an end.
"We’ve seen Davis too many times and he’s so good," Francona said. "But Brantley, regardless of how he’s swinging, you want him up there in that situation."
STATS AND STREAKS
The Indians are 5-0 in games started by Carrasco at Kauffman Stadium. … The home run by Moss was the 100th of his career. … Davis threw a season-high 38 pitches.
Indians: C Yan Gomes was back behind the plate. He caught 21 innings in two games over the weekend. Gomes recently return from an injured ligament in his knee.
Royals: C Sal Perez left in the eighth for precautionary reasons after taking a foul ball off his mask. "It’s nothing," Perez said. "I got tested already (for a concussion) and passed the test." … LHP Danny Duffy (biceps tendinitis) and RHP Kris Medlen (Tommy John surgery) will each throw two innings in a simulated game Thursday.
Indians: RHP Corey Kluber tries to win his fourth straight after starting 0-5. The reigning Cy Young Award winner has gone seven-plus innings in four consecutive starts.
Royals: LHP Jason Vargas makes his second start since missing 16 games with a left flexor strain. He allowed two runs in four innings against the Yankees last time out.