Shields, Royals aim for victory over Indians

Tough-luck righty James Shields aims for a second win in 11 career starts against the Cleveland Indians on Thursday afternoon when the Kansas City Royals host the Tribe in the finale of a three-game series at Kauffman Stadium.

Shields, who was 2-6 after a setback to St. Louis on May 27, made six starts in June but was credited with only one victory while allowing 13 runs in 39 1/3 innings of work.

Kansas City, however, was 6-0 in the games he pitched.

He faced Cleveland on June 17 at Progressive Field and went six full innings, allowing four hits and a run while walking four batters and striking out five in a game the Royals won, 2-1.

He's 1-5 in 10 career starts against the Indians with a 3.76 earned run average across 64 2/3 innings.

For Cleveland, Dominican righty Ubaldo Jimenez aims for a fourth win in his last five decisions since the start of June.

He was 3-3 in 10 starts through the end of May before going 3-1 in six June outings while paring his ERA from 5.57 to 4.63.

He last won June 24 after allowing two runs in 5 1/3 innings of a 5-2 defeat of the Baltimore Orioles, then got a no-decision five days later when the Indians topped the Chicago White Sox, 4-3.

Cleveland is 7-3 in Jimenez's last 10 starts.

On Wednesday, Eric Hosmer's tie-breaking home run in the seventh inning helped the Royals take a 6-5 win.

Miguel Tejada and Salvador Perez each had two hits and an RBI for the Royals, who had dropped the opener of this series by a 6-5 score.

Jeremy Guthrie pitched 6 1/3 innings and gave up five runs on five hits with three walks and three strikeouts. Will Smith (1-1) tossed 1 2/3 frames to get the win.

The start of the game was delayed for 2 hours, 37 minutes due to rain, and there was another delay of 12 minutes with one out in the seventh as several banks of lights in the stadium went out.

Jason Kipnis went 2-for-4 with a three-run inside-the-park home run for the Indians, who had a five-game winning streak snapped.

Scott Kazmir went five-plus innings in the start and gave up three runs on six hits. Cody Allen (3-1) was tagged with the loss for giving up Hosmer's home run.

"We made some mistakes tonight and we tried to battle back through them, but came up one run short," Indians manager Terry Francona said.

The Tribe won two of three against the Royals when the teams met up in Cleveland from June 17-19.