KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Brandon Barnes struck out twice, once leaving a runner on base. Charlie Blackmon also ended an inning with a strikeout, and Corey Dickerson began the next with another one.
Everyone who batted in the sixth inning for Colorado struck out, too.
One of the hottest hitting teams in baseball, the Rockies were neutralized by Royals starter James Shields on Tuesday night, fanning a season-high 12 times in a 5-1 loss to Kansas City.
"He just went after all of us. That's why he's pitched a long time," said Jordan Pacheco, who struck out twice. "He said, 'Here it is.' He had his stuff tonight and we didn't have our stuff tonight. You've got to tip your hat to him."
The only run Shields allowed came on an RBI single by Justin Morneau in the fourth inning. Shields (5-3) followed it up by retiring the final 10 batters he faced, striking out the side in the sixth inning and fanning Troy Tulowitzki for the 1,500th strikeout of his career.
"He threw a lot of changeups. The changeup is pretty much his go-to pitch," Rockies manager Walt Weiss said. "It looked like he was throwing the fastball on the outer part of the plate, on the corner, and then he'd go to the changeup. It's been a good formula for him for a while."
Alcides Escobar added a pair of RBIs, and relievers Wade Davis and Aaron Crow wrapped up the win for the Royals, who opened a nine-game homestand — their longest so far this season.
Franklin Morales (3-3) gave up four runs for the Rockies. He allowed eight hits and four walks without a strikeout in five innings, needing 99 pitches just to get that far.
"I need to pitch better, man, because that's my job," he said. "I try to do the best I can, but when I'm behind in the count every time I got in trouble."
The Royals jumped on Morales right from the start, a pair of double plays the only thing keeping the game from getting out of hand early. Still, Kansas City was able to coax a run across on a two-out single by Escobar to take the lead in the second inning.
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