SURPRISE, AZ -- The Cleveland Indians faced off against division foes Kansas City Royals to kick off Spring Training in the 2020 season. Cleveland right hander Jefry Rodriguez got the nod in the Spring Training opener, and threw two complete innings, giving up one earned run on two hits, striking out two batters and walking one. Indians' flamethrower James Karinchak earned his first win of the spring following an impressive performance in which he sat down the only three batters he saw, striking out one, as the tribe rolled to a 9-5 victory over the Royals.
The tribe found themselves in a close game as they entered the 5th inning tied up at one. Mike Freeman broke open the tie with line drive two-RBI single to right field, scoring both Yu Chang and Beau Taylor. Franmil Reyes added to Cleveland's lead in the 6th inning on a no-doubt solo home run to left center field. Gavin Collins added another long ball for the tribe on a solo shot in the 7th inning.
The trailing Kansas City Royals made some noise in the bottom of the 9th inning. Kelvin Gutierrez drove in Ka'ai Tom on a sharp line drive double to left center field. Erick Mejia grounded out to first base, scoring Gutierrez. Dalbert Siri was able to escape the trouble, halting the Kansas City rally.
The Cleveland Indians will take on the Colorado Rockies on Monday afternoon, first pitch set for 3:10 pm EST at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick, in Scottsdale, Arizona.