Danny Salazar, one of the arms in the battle for the Cleveland Indians final rotation spot, allowed two runs on three hits while walking one, but also struck out four in his two innings of work. Shaun Marcum worked two scoreless inning of relief as he battles for a spot on the Tribe’s pitching staff.
The Indians (2-2) staked an early lead, as Ryan Raburn knocked a two-run single, scoring Michael Bourn and Zach Walters. Roberto Perez would single in two more, and the Tribe chased Royals starter Yordano Ventura early. Ventura is hoping to battle for the Royals Opening Day starter –but today’s results won’t help that case.
The Indians held a 5-2 lead until the Royals (3-0) exploded in the fifth for an eight spot. Tribe reliever Bryan Shaw pitched himself into trouble, allowing three runs before surrendering the biggest blow–a three-run shot to Royals prospect Brett Eibner that put the Royals up 8-5. The home run would chase Shaw, but Kansas City added two more before the inning came to a painful end.
Perez was 2-for-2 for the Indians, driving in three on the afternoon. After a hot start to Spring Training, Carlos Moncrief cooled, going 0-for-2 with two left on base.
What Stood Out:
Salazar, in a battle with T.J. House and Josh Tomlin, and to some extent Bruce Chen and Shawn Marcum–struggled a little bit in his season opener. While he did surrender two runs, he looked strong on the mound, and overall manager Terry Francona was happy with the effort. “In the season, you can probably nitpick, but in spring training for a first outing, I thought the ball came out of Salazar’s hand really well,” Indians manager Terry Francona said.
Marcum, who had been an effective career in his starter before injuries, hopes to show he’s healthy and ready to contribute. He followed Salazar with two scoreless innings, while allowing two hits.
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Gavin Floyd, who is returning from injury and has pitched little in the last two seasons, will take a break due to soreness in his arm. Francona said it is not related to his past arm issues.
What’s Up Next:
The Tribe will host the Los Angeles Dodgers (3-1) at Goodyear Park at 3:05 p.m. ET. Last year’s AL Cy Young winner Corey Kluber is scheduled to take the mound for the Indians. His impressive season included an 18-9 record, with a 2.44 ERA.