Jun 28, 2014; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Royals pitcher Bruce Chen (52) delivers a pitch against the Los Angeles Angels during the sixth inning at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Peter G. Aiken-USA TODAY Sports

Angels hang Four Runs on Bruce Chen in Return

The Los Angeles Angels pecked away at Bruce Chen for 4 runs in the 6th after a 4-hour rain delay, to put the game out of reach in their 6-2 win over the Royals at Kauffman Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

The Angels led 2-0 after 4 innings against Royals starter Yordano Ventura when the game was called for the 2nd time due to rain. Rather than a short stoppage that didn’t even allow the grounds crew to unroll the tarp, the second delay lasted 3:58. When play resumed, Royals manager Ned Yost replaced Ventura with Bruce Chen, who had not pitched since April 24—when he went on the disabled list.

The loss drops the Royals to 41-39. Kansas City falls back to 4.5 games behind leader Detroit in the American League Central.

On the Mound

Yordano Ventura went 4.0 innings, allowing 7 hits, 2 doubles, 0 walks, and 2 earned runs with 3 strikeouts before the 4-hour rain delay. After sitting for so long, Yost pulled Ventura in favor of Bruce Chen, but Ventura still got tabbed for his 7th loss of the season (5-7).

Bruce Chen returned to action for the first time since April 24. After holding the Angels scoreless in the 5th, Chen gave up 4 hits and 1 walk in the 6th to allow the Angels to tack 4 runs onto their 2-0 lead. Chen did manage to finish out the game, pitching 5.0 innings while allowing 5 hits, 2 walks, 4 earned runs with 8 strikeouts.

While Chen didn’t keep the game close, he at least saved the rest of the bullpen for Sunday’s game.

At the Plate

The Royals continued their struggles at the dish. On Saturday, they managed only 6 hits, 1 walk, 1 hit batsman and 2 earned runs. Their only extra-base hit came from Alex Gordon, who doubled to lead off the 4rh inning.

Kansas City scored both of their runs in the bottom of the 6th. Eric Hosmer started the inning with a single, followed by a walk to Billy Butler. Alex Gordon’s liner to 1st did manage to advance the runners to 2nd and 3rd. Salvador Perez followed with a single that scored Hosmer, and Omar Infante hit a sacrifice fly to score Butler.

That was it for Kansas city scoring. No Royal managed more than one hit on the day. Billy Butler was the only Royal to reach base safely two times with a single and a walk, going 1-3, with 1 run scored,

This and That

Alex Gordon broke out of an 0-18 skid with his double in the 4th inning.

Bruce Chen saw his first action since April 24. Chen has now moved to the long-relief role in which he excelled last season after Danny Duffy seized a rotation spot in Chen’s absence.

Lorenzo Cain continued his outstanding play in the field when he ended the Angels 6th inning rally by throwing out Mike Trout at the plate.

Angels pitcher Mike Morin made his Kauffman Stadium debut after growing up in Overland Park. Morin’s family watched the game as he earned the win (2-1) against his childhood team. Morin, however, allowed both Royals runs in his 2 innings of work.

Angels reliever Jason Grilli made his Angels debut after coming over in a trade with the PIrates. Grilli pitched a socreless 8th inning with 1 strikeout.

KC Kingdom Player of the Game

I don’t know if any player deserves recognition after a mediocre effort on Saturday. No one truly stood out at the plate or on the mound. Lorenzo Cain turned in the best defensive play.  I’m going to go with Alex Gordon for getting the team’s only extra-base hit and breaking out of his 0-18 slump.

The Angels

Former Cardinals 3B David Freese had a terrific day for the Angels, going 3-4, with 2 singles, a double, 1 run scored and 3 RBI’s.

Up Next

The Royals and Angels finish their 3-game series with the rubber game on Sunday. The Royals will send Jeremy Guthrie (5-6, 3.75 ERA) to the mound against C.J. Wilson (8-6, 3.70 ERA) for Los Angeles. Game time is 1:10 CST at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City.

Box

Angels Batting AB R H RBI BB SO PA BA OBP SLG OPS
Kole Calhoun RF 5 2 3 1 0 1 5 .280 .335 .470 .805
Mike Trout CF 4 0 1 0 1 2 5 .312 .403 .611 1.013
Albert Pujols DH 5 0 2 2 0 0 5 .261 .316 .471 .787
Josh Hamilton LF 5 0 0 0 0 3 5 .306 .378 .438 .816
Erick Aybar SS 4 1 1 0 0 0 4 .284 .324 .422 .746
Howie Kendrick 2B 3 2 1 0 1 1 4 .276 .338 .383 .721
C.J. Cron 1B 4 0 1 0 0 1 4 .299 .326 .567 .893
David Freese 3B 4 1 3 3 0 1 4 .238 .312 .301 .613
   John McDonald PR-3B 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .220 .298 .244 .542
Hank Conger C 4 0 0 0 0 2 4 .230 .314 .369 .683
Team Totals 38 6 12 6 2 11 40 .316 .350 .395 .745

2B: K Calhoun (11, off Y Ventura); H Kendrick (15, off Y Ventura); D Freese (7, off B Chen).
TB: D Freese 4; K Calhoun 4; A Pujols 2; H Kendrick 2; E Aybar; C Cron; M Trout.
RBI: D Freese 3 (21); A Pujols 2 (49); K Calhoun (18).
2-out RBI: A Pujols 2; K Calhoun.
Team LOB: 7.
With RISP: 7 for 15.
Baserunning
SB: H Kendrick (10, 2nd base off B Chen/S Perez); E Aybar (8, 3rd base off B Chen/S Perez); D Freese (1, 2nd base off B Chen/S Perez).

Royals Batting AB R H RBI BB SO PA BA OBP SLG OPS
Lorenzo Cain CF 4 0 0 0 0 2 4 .311 .348 .427 .776
Eric Hosmer 1B 4 1 1 0 0 0 4 .249 .290 .350 .640
Billy Butler DH 3 1 1 0 1 0 4 .280 .332 .360 .692
Alex Gordon LF 4 0 1 0 0 2 4 .276 .355 .444 .799
Salvador Perez C 4 0 1 1 0 1 4 .288 .334 .450 .785
Omar Infante 2B 3 0 0 1 0 1 4 .244 .292 .357 .649
Danny Valencia 3B 4 0 1 0 0 1 4 .263 .310 .350 .660
Justin Maxwell RF 3 0 0 0 0 2 4 .150 .222 .175 .397
Alcides Escobar SS 3 0 1 0 0 0 3 .288 .329 .399 .727
Team Totals 32 2 6 2 1 9 35 .188 .229 .219 .447

2B: A Gordon (22, off H Santiago).
SF: O Infante (4, off M Morin).
HBP: J Maxwell (2, by K Jepsen).
TB: A Gordon 2; D Valencia; S Perez; B Butler; E Hosmer; A Escobar.
RBI: S Perez (28); O Infante (39).
Team LOB: 6.
With RISP: 1 for 8.
Fielding
Outfield Assists: L Cain (M Trout at 3rd base).

Angels Pitching IP H R ER BB SO HR ERA Pit Str
Hector Santiago 4 4 0 0 0 4 0 4.08 67 49
Mike Morin, W (2-1) 2 2 2 2 1 1 0 1.91 31 21
Kevin Jepsen 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 2.70 16 11
Jason Grilli 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 4.64 12 7
Joe Smith 1 0 0 0 0 2 0 2.94 12 9
Team Totals 9 6 2 2 1 9 0 2.00 138 97
Royals Pitching IP H R ER BB SO HR ERA Pit Str
Yordano Ventura, L (5-7) 4 7 2 2 0 3 0 3.26 56 41
Bruce Chen 5 5 4 4 2 8 0 7.40 88 58
Team Totals 9 12 6 6 2 11 0 6.00 144 99
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 6/29/2014.

Balks: None.
WP: H Santiago (3); Y Ventura (6).
HBP: K Jepsen (2; J Maxwell).
IBB: None.
Pickoffs: None.

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Tags: Alex Gordon Bruce Chen Kansas City Royals

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