A former number one draft pick, Royals starter pitcher Luke Hochevar is starting to play like one. Hochevar mowed down the Tampa Bay Rays by striking out eight and throwing his first shutout since Sept. of 2009 as the Royals won 8-0 Monday night.
Alcides Escobar and Alex Gordon both had three hits for the Royals. Gordon’s leadoff double set up an RBI double by Mike Moustakas when the ball bounced off right fielder Ben Zobrist’s glove and over his head after he lost it in the sun.
The Royals blew the game open with a five-run third. Escobar’s bunt single, a base hit by Gordon, and a wild pitch that plate umpire Todd Tichenor accidentally kicked away from catcher Jose Molina, allowed both runners to advance. Yuniesky Betancourt followed with a two-run single.
Billy Butler added a single, and Jeff Francoeur followed with an RBI single in which Butler was thrown out at third. Hosmer added an RBI single, and Salvador Perez drove in the final run of the inning. The Royals added another run on Betancourt’s sacrifice fly in the fourth inning, and Hosmer went deep in the eighth.
Hochevar had been 0-4 at home this season.