Royals strike out 18 times in 2-0 loss at Cleveland

Lynn Worthy The Kansas City Star (TNS)

CLEVELAND — Cleveland Indians pitcher Shane Bieber set the tone, and a franchise record for strikeouts in a season opener as the Royals fell, 2-0, Friday night at Progressive Field.

Royals Whit Merrifield, Salvador Perez, Alex Gordon and Nicky Lopez each had hits. Perez, who missed all last of season after undergoing Tommy John surgery in March, singled in his first regular-season at-bat since 2018.

But Bieber struck out 14 and the Royals struck out 18 times in all.

Lopez and Gordon were on base twice each. Lopez also walked and Gordon got hit by a pitch to start the ninth inning against Indians closer Brad Hand.

Royals starter Danny Duffy allowed two runs on three hits in 4 1/3 innings. Both runs scored after he'd come out of the game.

Highly-regarded pitching prospect Brady Singer was set to make his major league debut for the Royals Saturday evening in game two of the series and season.