Stephen Ellison

A's Unable to Put Away the Royals

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) Hunter Dozier homered before driving in the go-ahead run in the sixth inning, Ryan O'Hearn also went deep and the Kansas City Royals held on to beat the Oakland Athletics 6-4 on Wednesday night.

Tim Hill (2-0) tossed two perfect innings in relief of Jakob Junis for the Royals, and Ian Kennedy survived a harrowing ninth inning to pick up his 23rd save of the season.

Kennedy walked Jurickson Profar to begin the inning, then struck out Chris Herrmann and Corban Joseph. Marcus Semien singled to bring the go-ahead run to the plate, but Kennedy got Robbie Grossman to hit a lazy flyball to left field to end the game.

Blake Treinen (6-5) faced four batters in the seventh inning without recording an out for Oakland. He allowed three hits and a walk, and Jake Diekman allowed one of his inherited runners to score.

Semien and Mark Canha homered for the A's, who twice blew two-run leads in squandering a chance to go a season-best 22 games over .500. Oakland had won 16 of its last 22 against the Royals.

The big blows began Wednesday night with the game's second pitch.

They didn't stop with bats hitting balls, either.

Semien launched a solo shot off Junis to give the A's an early lead, and the Royals' starter proceeded to hit Matt Chapman in the helmet with a pitch two batters later. The impact launched Chapman's helmet toward the warning track, though he remained in the game until the end of the inning.

He later scored on Seth Brown's groundout.

The Royals tied it in the third when Tanner Roark served up Dozier's two-run shot. The homer over the left-field bullpen was bookended by Roark hitting Whit Merrifield and Alex Gordon with pitches.

Oakland jumped back ahead in the fifth on Canha's two-run homer, and the Royals quickly answered over the next couple innings. Jorge Soler got the first run back with an RBI double in the fifth, and O'Hearn tied it at 4-all when he belted an 0-2 pitch to right field to open the sixth.

Roark allowed four runs on five hits and a walk over six innings, striking out four. Junis gave up four runs on seven hits and a walk, striking out five.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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