KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Jake Odorizzi's major league debut could not have gone much better for the first five innings.
After limiting Cleveland to a pair of singles by Shin-Soo Choo in five scoreless innings, Odorizzi gave up three runs on four hits in the sixth as the Indians routed the Kansas City Royals 15-4 Sunday in their highest-scoring game of the season.
Carlos Santana connected for a two-run shot in the sixth inning off Odorizzi. Santana added his team-leading 18th homer, a three-run drive during a seven-run ninth. His five RBIs matches his career best, while it was his third multihomer game.
"For the majority of the game, I was hitting my spots and throwing the ball where I wanted to," Odorizzi said. "I was happy with everything up until that point. I'd like to have that sixth inning back, but you just can't do that."
Odorizzi (0-1) was one of four players acquired in the 2010 trade for Zack Greinke. The 22-year-old righty who went 15-5 with a 3.03 ERA in the minors this year will compete for a rotation slot in spring training.
"I thought he did a great job of getting ahead of the hitters," Royals manager Ned Yost said. "They were swinging through 91 miles per hour fastballs like they were 96 miles per hour fastballs. So he's created some deception in delivery, commanded the ball extremely well. I thought did a really nice job, good enough to warrant another look."
"I was proud of him. I thought he did an outstanding job for his first start. He's got all the intangibles. He fields his positions. He commands the baseball. He changes speeds. He's got great composure and a great competitive nature."
After Odorizzi left, six Kansas City relievers combined to give up 12 runs on 10 hits and seven walks in 3 2-3 innings.
"Not much to talk about besides Jake Odorizzi on the pitching side," Yost said.
After retiring Choo to lead off the sixth, Odorizzi allowed three runs on four consecutive hits. Jason Kipnis tripled and scored on Asdrubal Cabrera's single before Santana's homer.