KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - The Tampa Bay Rays are happy to be finished playing in Kansas City for the season as Kauffman Stadium has been a house of horrors for the Rays.
They have lost seven straight series in Kansas City, going 1-15 there since 2012.
Danny Duffy pitched six effective innings and rookie Whit Merrifield had two hits and scored a run as the Royals beat the Rays 6-3 on Wednesday night to complete a 6-0 homestand. The two teams play one more series in Tampa Bay.
“They’re as good as any team we’ve played this year,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said. “I know for a fact we were saying the same thing about them last year. They’re playing with a lot of confidence and a lot of energy. They’re capable, and they are overcoming some of those injuries. That’s the sign of a really good team.”
The last time the Royals had a homestand of 6-0 or better was June 2-8, 1988, when they went 7-0.
” I wish we could stay here another week,” said Jarrod Dyson, who had a sacrifice bunt, stole a base, walked, scored a run and picked up his sixth outfield assist.
Chris Archer (3-7) gave up five runs, four earned, eight hits and two walks over six innings.
“I’m not going to say I ran into a good team, because I didn’t execute every single pitch,” Archer said. “I made pitches, but the ball didn’t bounce our way tonight. Maybe it’s because they’re hot. They’re a good team. That’s what good teams do. If the inning (is) prolonged for whatever reason, for any team in the big leagues, they’re going to put up runs.”
The Royals jumped on Archer for four runs in the first two innings.
“We were down from the start really quick,” Cash said. “Archer came out and it looked like his thought was to pound the strike zone and their thought was not to take anything.”
Duffy (1-0) allowed three runs and seven hits, while walking none and striking out six over six innings, his longest outing since moving into the rotation on May 15.
Royals relievers Joakim Soria, Kelvin Herrera and Wade Davis held the Rays scoreless over the final three innings. Davis picked up his 16th save in 17 chances, but not before walking one, giving up a hit and uncorking a wild pitch.
Curt Casali homered for the Rays, while Mikie Mahtook snapped a career-worst 0-for-19 skid with a third-inning double and scored on a single by Brad Miller.
“Baseball players are dumb sometimes,” Casali said. “We try to over-swing. That’s when we get into fits and stuff doesn’t go the way we want it to. I’m not trying to hit home runs. I’m trying to hit the ball as hard as I can and put as quick of a swing as I can. Fortunately that was a good one.”
Rays: RHP Brad Boxberger was placed on the DL with a left oblique strain. He came off the DL on Monday, threw 16 pitches Tuesday and returned to the DL.
Royals: 3B Mike Moustakas is scheduled to undergo season-ending right knee surgery Thursday to repair a torn ACL. … OF Brett Eibner went on the DL with a left ankle sprain. … C Salvador Perez, who has missed four games with a bruised thigh, took batting practice and did some light running. He could return sometime during the four-game series at Cleveland.
The Rays recalled INF Tim Beckham from Triple-A Durham for his second stint. He struck out 23 times in 54 at-bats in his first stint. … The Royals recalled RHP Peter Moylan and OF Reymond Fuentes, who started in right in the season opener, from Triple-A Omaha. RHP Dillon Gee, who started and won Tuesday, was optioned to Omaha.
Rays: LHP Matt Moore is 1-0 with a 3.24 ERA in three career appearances against the Twins. He snapped a six-game winless streak when he beat the Mets in his previous start.
Royals: Royals RHP Yordano Ventura, who starts Thursday at Cleveland, has a 7.16 ERA in his past six starts, allowing 37 hits, including seven home runs, and walking 19 in 32 2/3 innings.
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