Bottom of the lineup drives in six runs as Mariners beat Royals

SEATTLE (AP) -- John McLaren didn't need a bat or ball in spring training. He needed a pulpit.

He constantly preached during his first camp as a major league manager about the need to manufacture runs with bunts, hitting behind runners and taking extra bases.

The sermons paid off Tuesday night.

Jose Lopez became the 12th player in major league history to hit three sacrifice flies in a game, Yuniesky Betancourt drove in three runs and the Seattle Mariners set a season high for runs with an 11-6 victory over the previously stingy Kansas City Royals.

"Yeah, pretty cool," said Lopez, the 24-year-old second baseman and No. 2 hitter on entering baseball's record book. "I've just been listening to the manager: 'Get the base hit. Get the long fly ball. Get the RBI.'"

Lopez added an RBI single while joining Edgar Martinez as the only other Mariners player to have three sacrifice flies in a game.

The Mariners had five sac flies overall to tie a major league-team record. Seattle also did it on Aug. 7, 1988, at Oakland. Colorado had five against Pittsburgh on June 7, 2006.

"My God, I didn't know that. That's really cool," McLaren said, sounding genuinely pleased that his lessons are being used on a team that in recent, playoff-free seasons usually didn't score much without home runs.

"We've preached this since spring training. ... I'm proud of these guys. We're making headway here."

Kansas City entered with an encouraging 8-5 record thanks to a major league-best ERA of 2.46 following consecutive complete games by Brian Bannister and Zack Greinke. It was the first time the Royals had pitched back-to-back complete games in eight years. A year ago, Kansas City had a 4.79 ERA through 13 games.

But after his teammates gave him a 1-0 lead, John Bale (0-3) allowed seven hits and five earned runs in three-plus innings. His results fit his complaint of a "dead arm."

"I'm not in any pain," said Bale, who spent last season as a reliever. "The ball's just not coming out," of his hand the same way.

"Get 'em on. Get 'em over. Get 'em in. That's exactly what they did today."

Hideo Nomo, in his second game of a comeback at the age of 39 after having elbow surgery in 2006, then allowed four runs while pitching the fourth and fifth.

Kansas City recorded just four groundball outs.

"That's never a good sign," first-year manager Trey Hillman said.

"When you have games like today, you try to keep it in perspective."

Seattle's Miguel Batista was far from sharp and also complained of a dead arm, which he said was the result of not being able do normal arm exercises for weeks because of a stiff back. Batista (1-2) labored through five innings, allowing seven hits and four runs. He walked two and struck out one.

The Mariners' Arthur Rhodes, who had ligament replacement surgery last May, got one out and allowed two singles in the ninth in his first game since Sept. 9, 2006, when he was with Philadelphia.

"[The doctor] said it would take 12 months to get back. I beat that," the 38-year-old left-hander said. "I'm proud of myself. I pat myself on the back."

Kansas City tied it at 4 in the fourth on an RBI groundout by Alex Gordon and RBI singles by Ross Gload and Tony Pena. Pena two had hits and two RBIs and is 4-for-7 since an 0-for-26 skid that ended on Monday.

But Betancourt's RBI single off Nomo and Lopez's second sacrifice fly put the Mariners up 6-4 in the fourth. Nomo then allowed a double by Adrian Beltre and walked Jose Vidro and Richie Sexson in the fifth before leaving.

Kenji Johjima greeted Ron Mahay with a double that scored Beltre and Vidro to make it 8-4. Then Betancourt joined Lopez's parade of sacrifice flies, scoring Sexson. Lopez singled home Willie Bloomquist for the fourth run of the inning to give Seattle a 10-4 lead.

Lopez's final sacrifice fly in the seventh scored Johjima and tied the record.

Game notes
Seattle ace Erik Bedard went on the 15-day DL with inflammation in his left hip. The move is retroactive to April 9. McLaren said Bedard should only miss his next scheduled start Friday at the Los Angeles Angels before returning April 24. RHP R.A. Dickey, who hasn't started in the majors in 24 months, will start Friday. ... Royals DH Billy Butler's 13-game hitting streak ended.