(SportsNetwork.com) - Edinson Volquez tries to bounce back from a rough start his previous time out when the AL Central-leading Kansas City Royals resume a four-game series against the Texas Rangers.
Volquez pitched a season-low three innings in Thursday's 7-4 win over Cleveland and did not record a decision after he allowed three runs with a season-high six walks and three strikeouts.
The right-hander said he was bothered by a blister on his hand.
"I have been dealing with that the last couple of starts and today was the worst," Volquez said after the game. "When it (burst) in the second inning, I didn't say anything. But the last inning, I couldn't grip the ball. It was tough to throw."
Volquez hopes the bullpen won't have to pick him up again and he is 2-3 with a 2.65 earned run average in six starts. He is winless (0-2) in his last three trips to the mound and lost his only appearance against Texas, allowing six runs in five innings of work.
Kansas City dropped the opener of this Arlington series on Monday by an 8-2 score and starting pitcher Danny Duffy struggled with his command. Duffy was touched for six runs, including four in the second inning, walked six batters and struck out four in just 3 2/3 frames.
It was a far cry from what Rangers starter Colby Lewis did in seven innings, as he limited the Royals to a run and three hits.
"Colby Lewis threw great," Royals manager Ned Yost said. "It was all Lewis. He was good."
Alcides Escobar had two hits and an RBI and Kendrys Morales drove in a run for Kansas City, which entered the night with four wins in six tries and is now only a game ahead of the Detroit Tigers in the Central standings.
Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas returned from the bereavement list after three days and went 0-for-3 with a walk.
The Rangers have won two in a row and seven of their last 10 games, and set the tone with four runs in the second inning. They took advantage of a wild Duffy and received home runs from Prince Fielder, Adrian Beltre and Thomas Field. Field's contract was purchased from Triple-A Round Rock prior to the game and he connected on his first career home run.
Beltre homered in a second consecutive game and has 399 in his career, while Fielder went deep for the first time since May 1.
"Those are the guys in the heart of the lineup that are going to make this offense go," Rangers manager Jeff Banister said. "To watch them heat up it just gives you a glance at what this offense can do."
Nick Martinez has had plenty of run support in his six starts this season and gets the nod for Texas Tuesday. The Rangers have scored at least five runs in every appearance for Martinez, who is 2-0 with a 1.47 ERA and hasn't received a decision in each of his past four outings.
Martinez gave up three runs in 4 2/3 innings of a 5-4 win at Tampa Bay on Thursday and the Rangers are unbeaten when he takes the hill. The right-hander will face the Royals for the first time.
Texas and Kansas City are meeting for the first time this season. The Royals won five of the six meetings between the clubs in 2014.