CLEVELAND (AP) — Fausto Carmona, backed by four solo home runs, pitched seven solid innings and the Cleveland Indians earned their 10th straight home win by beating Kansas City 8-2 on Thursday night to extend the Royals’ losing streak to six.
Carmona (2-3) allowed two runs and five hits as Cleveland opened a 4½-game lead over the Royals and Detroit Tigers in the AL Central. The right-hander walked two and struck out two.
Shin-Soo Choo and Carlos Santana connected for consecutive homers with two outs in the first inning off Kyle Davies (1-3). Grady Sizemore opened the third with his fourth homer and Shelley Duncan, a late lineup addition when designated hitter Travis Hafner was scratched with an inflamed right ankle, began the fourth with his first of the year to make it 4-0.
That made it 17 homers allowed by Kansas City during its losing streak. The Royals have dropped nine of 11 and open a nine-game homestand Friday against Minnesota after going 0-6 on a trip to Texas and Cleveland in which they were outscored 46-22.
Jeff Francoeur stretched his hitting streak to a career-high 17 games for Kansas City. He doubled in the seventh and Wilson Betemit followed with a two-run double to make it 8-2.
Carmona worked out of a third-inning jam and was in command until the seventh.
Matt Treanor blooped a one-out single to right for the Royals’ first hit and went to third on a double down the third-base line by Alcides Escobar.
Carmona then got leadoff man Jarrod Dyson to ground to first baseman Matt LaPorta, who threw home. Santana ran Treanor back toward third base and applied the tag as Escobar took third and Dyson second. Carmona then struck out Melky Cabrera.
Jack Hannahan had a two-run double in the Indians’ fourth and scored on a double by Sizemore. Asdrubal Cabrera followed with another RBI double for an 8-0 lead.
Davies allowed eight runs and nine hits over 3 2-3 innings. The right-hander had yielded only one homer in 26 innings over his first five starts.
NOTES — Cleveland put RHP Carlos Carrasco on the 15-day disabled list with an inflamed right elbow and recalled RHP Frank Herrmann from Triple-A Columbus. Manager Manny Acta said RHP Alex White will be called up Saturday to make his major league debut in Carrasco’s rotation spot. White was a first-round draft pick in 2009. ... Sizemore, who had microfracture surgery on his left knee in June, was replaced in center field in the seventh as a drizzle dampened the field. ... Davies dropped to 3-6 against Cleveland. ... Royals 2B Chris Getz, in a 3-for-15 slump, got the night off. He was replaced by Mike Aviles.