KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Former Ray James Shields kept the Indians off balance for six innings, Salvador Perez led a scrappy offense and the Royals beat Cleveland 7-1 on Monday night to open a three-game set with significant playoff implications.
Shields struck out a season-high 10 for the Royals (79-71), who moved within 2½ games of the AL's second wild-card berth. The Indians (81-69) remained a half-game back of the Rangers, who lost to the Rays.
Shields allowed only Lonnie Chisenhall's solo homer before turning the game over to his stingy bullpen. Fellow former Ray Wade Davis, Luke Hochevar and Tim Collins did the rest in a steady drizzle.
Another ex-Ray, Scott Kazmir, labored into the sixth and didn't get much help from his offense, which had a season-high 17 strikeouts.
Perez finished with three hits and was among six players to drive in runs for Kansas City, which is chasing its first postseason berth since winning the 1985 World Series.