KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- They had the best record in spring
training and are tied for the best in the regular season.
So far, at least, success has returned to the Kansas City
Royals. "If you've been around baseball at all and have a perspective,
you know we've got 157 games to go,'' Brent Mayne said after Kansas
City beat the Cleveland Indians 3-1 Saturday. "It takes a bit
longer than five games to make anybody shake in their boots, but in
any town this start would get anybody's attention.'' Runelvys Hernandez combined with Jason Grimsley and Mike
MacDougal on a two-hitter. The Royals are the first major league
team to start 5-0 after a 100-loss season. "We have confidence,'' Hernandez said. "I think we're going to
be better this year.'' Hernandez (2-0) beat the Chicago White Sox in the Royals' season
opener, a start he was awarded in a coin toss. Against the Indians,
he allowed one run and two hits in seven innings, struck out three
and walked one. He has a 0.69 ERA in 13 innings. Grimsley struck out two in the eighth, and MacDougal finished
with two strikeouts and a comebacker for his third save in as many
tries. The 5-0 start is the best in the history of the Royals, who were
62-100 last season. Three other teams started 4-0 following
100-loss season -- the 1952 St. Louis Browns, 1906 Boston Bean
Eaters and the 1899 St. Louis Perfectos --- but all lost their fifth
games. "Even the Royals' world championship team (in 1985) didn't
start out 5-0, but 5-0 doesn't guarantee we'll be playing in
October,'' Mike Sweeney said.'' Michael Tucker doubled and tripled, and scored the first two
runs for Kansas City. "We need to keep this moving, keep going along,'' Tucker said.
"Last year is last year. We can't do anything about that. For the
most part, we are just doing the same things we did in spring
training. We're getting timely hitting and situational hitting,
things you need to do to win games.'' Mayne and Carlos Febles, the Royals' eighth and ninth hitters,
each had three hits. Indians left-hander C.C. Sabathia (0-1) left with two outs in
the seventh because of soreness in his left forearm. Sabathia, who
dropped to 7-2 against the Royals, gave up eight hits, walked three and hit a batter. Sabathia said he hyperextended his elbow and will return Sunday
to Cleveland to have his arm examined. "I tried to reach back and get a little extra with my last
pitch and probably reached back too far and got too much,''
Sabathia said. Tucker led off the first with a double, advanced on Desi
Relaford's sacrifice and scored on Sweeney's sacrifice fly. Consecutive doubles by John McDonald and Milton Bradley tied the
score in the third, but the Indians failed to get a hit after that. "We did a good job of staying in it,'' Indians manager Eric
Wedge said. "Offensively, we need to get a little bit better. We
were a little bit sloppy at times.'' Tucker tripled in the bottom half and scored on an error when
shortstop Omar Vizquel made a bad throw on the relay. The Royals had two runners thrown out at home. Relaford tried to
score from second base on Raul Ibanez's single in the third inning,
and Mayne attempted to come around from first on Carlos Febles'
double in the fourth. Angel Berroa hit an RBI grounder in the
Royals OF Carlos Beltran, on the disabled list with a
strained right oblique muscle, took batting practice swings off
hitting coach Jeff Pentland in the indoor cages before the game.
... The Indians said Monday's home opener against the Chicago White
Sox is sold out. ... Sweeney has drawn seven walks, two of them
intentional. ... Kansas City was 19-10 in spring training.