KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) Eric Hosmer
hit a go-ahead homer in the seventh inning, and the Kansas City Royals
rallied after losing outfielder Alex Gordon to a head injury to beat the
Cleveland Indians 6-5 on a wild Wednesday night at Kauffman Stadium.
Hosmer connected with two outs off
Indians reliever Cody Allen (3-1), one inning after Gordon collided with
the bullpen fence while tracking a fly ball. The Gold Glove outfielder
remained down on the warning track for several minutes before slowly
standing up and walking off the field.
Will Smith (1-1) pitched 1 2/3 innings
of scoreless relief for the Royals, and Greg Holland managed the ninth
to help Kansas City snap a three-game skid against the Indians.
Holland worked around an error by shortstop Alicdes Escobar for his 18th save.
Jason Kipnis ended up with a
three-run, inside-the-park homer on the play that Gordon was injured,
extending his hitting streak to 14 games. But the bullpen failed to hold
the 3-1 lead that he provided, ultimately snapping Cleveland’s
five-game winning streak.
The start of the game was delayed 2
hours, 37 minutes by a stubborn rain cloud that refused to budge from
over the stadium, even though there were clear skies not more than a
The delay caused more problems in the
seventh inning, when the clock hit midnight. A glitch in the stadium
computer system caused about half of the lights to go out, and it took
12 minutes for them to cool enough to come back on and allow play to
The Royals carried a 1-0 lead into the
sixth inning in what was shaping up as a tidy pitching duel between
Jeremy Guthrie and Indians counterpart Scott Kazmir.
Michael Bourn and Asdrubal Cabrera led
off the sixth with singles, and Kipnis hit a fly ball deep to left
field. Gordon was tracking it the whole way but slammed his head into
the fencing of the Royals bullpen as he leaped for the ball, crashing
into a heap on the warning track.
He remained down while Kipnis rounded
the bases for the Indians’ first inside-the-park homer since Jhonny
Peralta toured the bases against Detroit on July 18, 2010.
Gordon was eventually helped from the
field by Royals trainer Nick Kenney. The team said he had a possible
concussion and a bruised right hip, and he will be evaluated again Thursday.
The Royals regained the lead in the
bottom of the sixth, pecking away with five singles and taking advantage
of a wild throw on a pickoff attempt. The error was given to first
baseman Nick Swisher and allowed Lorenzo Cain to score from third,
giving Kansas City a 5-3 lead.
That lead also turned out to be short-lived.
After the lights went out and were
finally restored, Guthrie promptly walked the Indians’ Ryan Raburn and
Yan Gomes. The right-hander was lifted for Smith, who gave up a
run-scoring single to Bourn and a tying sacrifice fly to Cabrera but
recovered to keep the game tied.
That’s when Hosmer went deep off Allen in the seventh inning.
The Royals’ hot-hitting first baseman
turned on a 1-0 pitch and sent it soaring into the night, the ball
landing well beyond the center-field fence for his eighth homer of the
Kansas City loaded the bases in the
eighth but failed to tack on an insurance run, but it turned out to be a
moot point. Holland struck out Mark Reynolds, and after Escobar’s error
he got Jason Giambi to fly out and Bourn to strike out shortly after 1
a.m. CT to end the game.
NOTES: Bourn was activated from the
paternity list before the game and LHP Nick Hagadone was optioned to
Triple-A Columbus. … Jarrod Dyson took over CF when Gordon was
injured. Cain slid from center to right and David Lough from left to
right. … Indians RHP Ubaldo Jimenez will take the mound for a July 4
matinee against Royals RHP James Shields.