Cleveland, OH – Lonnie Chisenhall clubbed his first career grand slam to back a solid start from Scott Kazmir, as the Cleveland Indians downed the Kansas City Royals, 5-3, Saturday in the second contest of a three- game series at Progressive Field.
Jason Kipnis finished 3-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored, while Kazmir (5-4) held the Royals to two runs on four hits and three walks while striking out six over 6 1/3 innings to earn the victory.
"It feels good to be able to go out there and throw strikes, be able to get quick outs and go deep into the game was great," said Kazmir.
Chris Perez pitched a perfect ninth to nail down his 12th save of the season and secure Cleveland's third straight victory.
Jeremy Guthrie (8-7) was touched for all five runs on eight hits and three walks over seven frames to absorb the loss.
Alcides Escobar plated a pair of runs, while Miguel Tejada added an RBI and a run scored for the Royals, who have lost four straight games.
"Eb and flow, one of those periods you've got to grind through," said Royals manager Ned Yost. "You've got to compete yourself through it, they're working their tails off."
Cleveland opened the scoring in the third. Michael Bourn stroked a leadoff single, moved to third when Asdrubal Cabrera followed with a base hit to center and scored on Kipnis' sacrifice fly to left for a 1-0 lead.
Chisenhall provided some breathing room in the sixth when he crushed his sixth homer of the season with the bags full of Indians.
Kipnis started the frame with a single before Michael Brantley laced a one-out double and Carlos Santana was intentionally walked to load the bases. Guthrie bounced back with a strikeout of Jason Giambi, but Chisenhall launched a first-pitch curveball into the seats in right to make it 5-0 Cleveland.
Kazmir, meanwhile, held the Royals in check for most of his outing until running into trouble in the seventh, when he issued consecutive walks to start the frame.
Kazmir got Mike Moustakas to pop out to the catcher before being removed in favor of Matt Albers, who served up a single to Tejada that scored Salvador Perez to get the visitors on the board.
David Lough then grounded out before Albers intentionally walked Alex Gordon to get to Escobar, who smacked a two-run single to deep short to bring the Royals within 5-3.
Rich Hill took over on the mound and fanned Eric Hosmer to end the frame before Vinnie Pestano and Perez combined to keep the Royals off the board over the final two frames.
Kazmir has two wins and four no-decisions over his last six starts since his last loss on June 10 at Texas ... Cleveland went 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position and left seven men on base ... Kansas City finished 2-for-10 with RISP and stranded eight baserunners.