The Associated Press
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Pinch-hitter Billy Butler’s two-run homer with two outs in the eighth inning sent the Kansas City Royals over the Indians 6-4 Friday night for their fourth straight win.
Carlos Santana homered twice for the Indians, who have lost five of six.
Butler connected against John Axford, sending a drive over the Royals’ bullpen in left field. Butler was hitting just .200 in his previous 20 games with two RBIs.
The Royals won a game of matchup moves. After Salvador Perez singled with one out in the eighth off Carlos Carrasco (3-4), reliever Nick Hagadone entered and got the second out.
Butler batted for Raul Ibanez and homered on Axford’s second pitch.
Earlier in the game, Ibanez at 42 drove in a run when became the oldest player to hit a triple in Royals’ history. Ibanez scored on the play when second baseman Jason Kipnis made a wild relay throw.
Kelvin Herrera (2-2) pitched a scoreless eighth and Aaron Crow worked around a leadoff double in the ninth to earn his second save in four chances.
Royals closer Greg Holland, who had pitched in the three previous games, was unavailable.
Perez, who had three hits, and Mike Moustakas had back-to-back home runs to open the second. It was the second time this season Perez and Moustakas hit consecutive homers, having also done it April 23 at Cleveland.
Royals rookie Yordano Ventura, tagged for six runs and nine hits in 4⅓ innings in his previous start at Boston, departed after 6⅓ innings. He gave up three earned runs and struck out seven.
Santana hit a solo homer in the fourth and a two-run shot in the sixth.
Indians right-hander Josh Tomlin, who was 1-5 in his previous seven starts, was pulled after 5⅓ innings.