KANSAS CITY (AP) — Josh Donaldson hit a grand slam and double during a 10-run seventh inning, powering the Cleveland Indians past the Kansas City Royals 14-6 Friday night.
The AL Central champion Indians improved to 90-70, marking the third time in team history they’ve won at least 90 in three straight years.
Jason Kipnis’ homer in the Cleveland third was the game’s only run in the first six innings.
But the Indians then broke loose for their first 10-run inning since doing it on Sept. 30, 2012, against the Royals in Cleveland.
Cleveland began the nine-hit inning with a double before singles by Yonder Alonso and Melky Cabrera chased Royals started Ian Kennedy (3-9).
Kipnis and Roberto Perez greeted reliever Tim Hill with singles. Francisco Lindor followed with a chopper to first baseman Ryan O’Hearn against a drawn-in Royals infield, and his wild throw home let two more runs score.
One out later, reliever Jake Newberry walked Jose Ramirez and gave up an RBI single to Edwin Encarnacion. Donaldson, acquired Aug. 31 in a trade with Toronto, launched his fifth career grand slam and second this season. He also had one in April for the Blue Jays.
Adam Rosales, who pinch-ran for Alonso earlier in the inning, doubled and later scored on a double by Greg Allen, who pinch-ran for Kipnis.
The 10 runs were the most the Royals had allowed in an inning this season.
It was a welcome outburst for the Indians, who had only scored two runs in the first 16 innings of the series.
Mike Clevinger (13-8) was the beneficiary of the bonanza. He allowed three hits in 6 2/3 innings.
Brian Goodwin hit a grand slam in the Royals ninth off Adam Plutko. It was the second career grand slam for Goodwin, acquired in a July trade with Washington. He also had one March 31 for the Nationals.
Whit Merrifield extended his hitting streak to 18 games for the Royals. It’s the longest active streak in the majors and one shy of his career best.
Indians: Manager Terry Francona essentially ruled out INF Erik Gonzalez for the remainder of the weekend. He said Gonzalez, who was hit in the head by a pitch Wednesday at the Chicago White Sox, remains in concussion protocol. The team hopes Ramirez will be available for an intrasquad game Tuesday in preparation for the AL Division Series, which starts Friday in Houston.
Reigning AL Cy Young Award winner Corey Kluber (20-7, 2.83 ERA) will make his final appearance before the ALDS. RHP Jakob Junis (8-12, 4.42) is scheduled to start for the Royals.
© 2018, Newspaper Staff. All rights reserved.