OAKLAND, Calif. — Jorge Soler and Andrew Benintendi homered to help back Mike Minor, and the Kansas City Royals snapped a five-game losing streak by beating the Oakland Athletics 6-1 on Thursday night.
The Royals finally got to Frankie Montas (6-6), who was crisp into the seventh with eight strikeouts and no walks. He was tagged for three runs — two earned — on five hits over 6 1/3 innings.
Minor (5-3) struck out eight and walked one while allowing three hits and one earned run over seven strong innings.
His offense came through late.
Hunter Dozier hit a tying double in the seventh then Kelvin Gutiérrez followed with a go-ahead, two-run single.
Soler connected for a two-run homer in the eighth and Benintendi added a solo shot that inning as key contributors to an important Royals win after they were outscored 22-5 in a three-game road sweep by the Angels.
Jed Lowrie homered leading off the fourth, but that was it for Oakland, which has struggled recently clearing the fences at home with regular windy conditions,
“Matt Olson hit a ball 109 mph yesterday at 31 degrees, which is a homer anywhere, anytime, and it barely made it to the warning track,” manager Bob Melvin said before the game. “That can be frustrating at times for these guys.”
The A’s dropped to 9-2 against the AL Central this season.
Montas had been 2-0 with a 1.62 ERA over his first three career outings against the Royals.
The Royals are just 5-10 with four series defeats to the A’s since the club’s last winning set — taking two of three versus Oakland from Aug. 14-16, 2017. But since a 19-4 loss on Aug. 26, 2019, the last six meetings had been decided by two or fewer runs and four straight one-run games before Thursday’s result.
The teams hadn’t played since Sept. 18, 2019.
Royals: SS Adalberto Mondesí, on the IL with a strained left hamstring, continues his baseball activities as he works back from the injury. … LHP Danny Duffy (left forearm flexor strain) threw a side session.
Athletics: CF Ramón Laureano, working back from a strained right hip that landed him on the IL, hit live batting practice on the field for the first time and said the hip isn’t affected at the plate but rather when on his feet playing defense. He expects he might need a rehab assignment not as much for his hitting but “more playing seven innings” in center field. He is doing some running and hopes soon to progress to running bases. “That’s the goal,” he said. … RHP J.B. Wendelken (strained left oblique) is set to throw a 30-pitch bullpen session Friday. … Closer Trevor Rosenthal, sidelined by inflammation in his pitching shoulder, is still working through an aggressive strengthening program. “He hasn’t started playing catch yet, we’re probably still a little bit away from that,” Melvin said. “Everything that he’s doing right now, we’re still hopeful at some point in time we have him this year.”
RHP Brady Singer (3-5, 4.88 ERA) pitches for Kansas City in the second matchup of the four-game set Friday night looking to avoid dropping consecutive starts for the first time since his initial two outings of 2021. Oakland counters with LHP Cole Irvin (4-7, 3.89), who snapped a four-game losing streak his last time out by beating Colorado on Saturday.
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