Perez's two-run home run powers Royals past Rays
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - The Kansas City Royals won a back-and-forth game with the Tampa Bay Rays 3-2 Tuesday night on a two-run home run by Salvador Perez in the seventh inning.
The seesaw battle opened with an RBI single in the first inning off the bat of Eric Hosmer to score Lorenzo Cain and gave Kansas City a 1-0 lead.
The Rays tied the game at 1-1 in the bottom of the fifth inning on a throwing error by Royals' starting pitcher Yordano Ventura. Kevin Kiermaier laid down a bunt that was fielded by Ventura, whose throw to first base sailed wide of Hosmer, which allowed Logan Forsythe to score from second base.
The Rays took the lead later in the inning on an RBI groundout by Desmond Jennings that brought home Kiermaier from third base and made the score 2-1 Tampa Bay.
The Royals took the lead back for good in the top of the seventh inning on the Perez two-run home run to left field that brought in Hosmer and put Kansas City up 3-2. Xavier Cedeno, who allowed the home run to Perez, took the loss for Tampa Bay, which dropped his season mark to 3-3.
Tampa Bay threatened in the bottom of the seventh inning putting two men on base, but Royals' reliever Matt Strahm, who made his second major league appearance Tuesday, struck out Brad Miller and Jennings to get out of the inning and preserve Kansas City's 3-2 advantage.
Chris Young threw an inning and a third of scoreless ball in relief of Ventura to pick up his third win of the year and improve to 3-8 on the season.
Kelvin Herrera, who pitched a scoreless ninth inning for the Royals, earned his third save of the year.
The Royals' third game of a four game series with the Rays is set for Wednesday night at 6:10 p.m.