Cleveland, OH (SportsNetwork.com) - Michael Brantley and Jason Kipnis both hit two-run homers to help guide the Cleveland Indians to a 4-3 win over the Kansas City Royals in the opener of a four-game set from Progressive Field.
Zach McAllister (3-0) stayed unbeaten on the season after allowing three runs -- two earned -- on six hits over six-plus innings. Marc Rzepczynski, Cody Allen and John Axford all pitched perfect innings in relief, with Axford recording his seventh save of the season in eight tries.
"I'm just trying to execute pitches," said McAllister. "I'm just trying to get three outs, execute pitches, and let my defense work."
Nick Swisher and Lonnie Chisenhall had two hits apiece for Cleveland, winners of two straight on the heels of three consecutive setbacks.
Omar Infante went 2-for-4 with a triple and an RBI for Kansas City, which saw starter Jeremy Guthrie (2-1) surrender all four runs on 10 hits in 6 1/3 innings.
"I thought (Guthrie) threw the ball well," said Royals manager Ned Yost. "He made three mistakes. He hung a changeup to Brantley and he hung a curveball to Swisher and a slider to Kipnis. The two homers is what did the damage."
Cleveland missed an opportunity in the third inning. David Murphy reached on an infield single to start the frame and with two outs, Swisher doubled off the wall in center field. Jarrod Dyson played the carom perfectly and fired it in to Alcides Escobar, whose relay was in time to nail Murphy at home plate.
The hosts capitalized next inning, however, when Brantley crushed a two-run homer out to right. Kipnis doubled to leadoff the stanza.
Kansas City responded in the next half inning. Mike Moustakas started the top of the fifth with a double to center and scored one batter later on Escobar's two-bagger. Dyson then moved Escobar to third with a sacrifice bunt, but McAllister's throw to first missed the target and Escobar trotted home to tie the score.
After Norichika Aoki grounded out, Infante singled to left to score Dyson and put KC in front.
Swisher doubled to lead off the home half of the sixth when Kipnis took advantage of a hanging breaking ball from Guthrie and stroked it out over the wall in right-center field for a 4-3 margin.
The Indians bullpen took it from there.