CLEVELAND — Carlos Carrasco put forth a strong effort in his second start back from the disabled list and Lonnie Chisenhall had three hits as the Indians took care of the Kansas City Royals, 8-3, on Monday night at Progressive Field.
Carrasco (13-10), who recently came off the disabled list for shoulder inflammation, allowed a home run to Alex Gordon on the first pitch of the game and then settled down, not allowing another run over the next six innings. He allowed five hits and struck out nine, and his pitch count was increased to 82 after being limited to 60 in his last start.
By the time Carrasco exited, the Indians had knocked around Royals starting pitcher Edinson Volquez (13-8). Jason Kipnis, who's been slumping all September, responded to Gordon's lead-off home run with a lead-off home run of his own, golfing a solo shot (his eighth of the season) to right-center field to tie it 1-1.
In the third inning, Francisco Lindor walked, stole second base and later scored on Chisenhall's double to right field, giving the Indians (71-71) a 2-1 lead. An inning later, Giovanny Urshela added a solo home run, his sixth of the season, to left field. In the fifth, Chisenhall got another run home and made it 4-1 with a sacrifice fly to center field after the Indians loaded the bases.
Carrasco then worked himself into some trouble in the sixth, when the Royals (84-59) loaded the bases with two out. He got out of it, though, by inducing Kendrys Morales to ground out to end the threat.
In the seventh, the bullpen struggled to hold the 4-1 lead. Zach McAllister entered one day after he walked the bases loaded against the Detroit Tigers and was shaky again, recording two outs but allowing two singles.
Bryan Shaw came on in relief and watched as two ground balls were softly hit along the third-base line, giving Urshela little hope of making a play. The two tappers, neither of which traveled more than about 80 feet, each brought home a run to cut the Indians' advantage to 4-3. Shaw responded by getting Lorenzo Cain to fly out to end the inning and preserve the lead.
In the bottom of the seventh, the Indians pulled away, again led by Chisenhall. After Michael Brantley hit his major-league leading 44th double of the season and Carlos Santana walked, Chisenhall drove Brantley in with a single to right field. Yan Gomes followed with a two-run double to right-center field, making it 7-3.
Lindor capped another positive night in the eighth with an RBI triple that hit the top of the wall in right field, narrowly missing a home run.