Did Royals general manager Dayton Moore really know what he was getting in starter Gil Meche? It certainly seemed that way Monday. Meche, who signed a club-record five-year, $55 million contract this offseason was under the watchful eye of a sellout crowd at Kauffman Stadium on Opening Day. It didn’t matter…

The veteran righthander stopped a powerful Red Sox offense holding them to just six hits and one run while striking out six in 7.1 innings. It was the longest opening day outing by a Royals starter in nearly 20 years.

"It was great, something I’ll never forget, being a part of this," Meche said. "The standing ovation was an unbelievable feeling for me."

Offense was not a problem for the Royals in their 7-1 victory. Kansas City pounded out 12 hits led by Mark Grudzielanek, who went 3-for-5 with three RBI and received his Gold Glove Award from last season. John Buck led off the sixth inning with the game’s only home run.

Boston starter Curt Schilling was ineffective after four innings surrendering five runs on eight hits.

"Physically, I felt fine. I just didn’t execute and didn’t adjust," Schilling said. "One thing I’ve always preached to young pitchers is about the ability to make a mistake on a pitch and come back and make an adjustment on the very next pitch. I didn’t do that today."

The Royals jumped on Schilling early answering the run they gave up in the top of the first. Kansas City scored another in the second and three more in the fourth.

Rookie third baseman Alex Gordon went 0-for-3 striking out twice for the Royals.

The  two teams play Game 2 of the series tomorrow at 7:10 p.m.