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Tigers nab 'W' at Emporia -10/19/2014, 8:21 PM

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Monarchs take team to Class 4A state -10/19/2014, 8:20 PM

Area prep football roundup, Oct. 17 -10/19/2014, 8:20 PM

Indian volleyball second at WAC -10/19/2014, 8:20 PM

HHS has high expectations for 4A golf finale -10/19/2014, 8:20 PM

Buhler hands Hays High first loss in blowout -10/19/2014, 8:20 PM

FHSU men win eighth straight -10/18/2014, 8:21 PM

FHSU Tiger Open XC results -10/18/2014, 8:21 PM

Tiger women record third consecutive shutout -10/18/2014, 8:20 PM

Tiger volleyball wins third straight match -10/18/2014, 8:20 PM

Indians' Forinash goes 0-2 at 4A state -10/18/2014, 8:20 PM

TMP falls in district opener to Beloit -10/17/2014, 11:46 AM

HHS soccer falls to Bishop Carroll -10/17/2014, 10:28 AM

FHSU men's soccer wins seventh straight -10/17/2014, 10:28 AM

Tigers look to climb back above .500 -10/17/2014, 10:38 AM

HHS fourth in WAC meet -10/17/2014, 10:28 AM

TMP boys 2nd, girls 3rd at Lakeside -10/17/2014, 10:28 AM

TMP volleyball goes 2-0 in first day at MCL -10/17/2014, 10:28 AM

Indians' Forinash in 4A state field -10/17/2014, 10:28 AM

Wichita State's Darius Carter shows off his jumper -10/17/2014, 10:27 AM

KVA prep volleyball rankings, Oct. 15 -10/16/2014, 10:31 AM

TMP drops close one to Liberal -10/16/2014, 10:11 AM

TMP gets Beloit in district opener -10/16/2014, 10:11 AM

K.C. headed to first World Series since 1985 -10/16/2014, 10:11 AM

Selden ready to step into bigger role -10/16/2014, 10:11 AM

Big district game for Hays High -10/16/2014, 10:31 AM

Area prep football district standings, Oct. 16 -10/16/2014, 10:11 AM

Royals sweep O's, headed to World Series -10/15/2014, 7:17 PM

Tigers fall in three -10/15/2014, 11:39 AM

Chiefs' Johnson sheds weight in hopes of return -10/15/2014, 10:13 AM

Giants win walk-off on throwing error in 10th -10/15/2014, 10:12 AM

Wildcat running backs looking to break out -10/15/2014, 10:12 AM

Royals one win from World Series -10/15/2014, 11:44 AM

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SPOTLIGHT
Royals open key stretch with win

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Royals open key stretch with win

Published on -9/17/2013, 10:30 AM

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By DAVE SKRETTA

Associated Press

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Royals ace James Shields peered in at the Indians' Yan Gomes, who had stepped to the plate with two runners aboard in the fourth inning of a nip-and-tuck game between playoff contenders.

When Gomes swung and missed at strike three, Shields roared like a lion as he stalked off the mound, the intensity of meaningful September baseball etched across his face.

Shields wound up going six innings Monday night, and Salvador Perez led a scrappy Kansas City offense that eventually pulled away for a 7-1 victory in the opener of a pivotal three-game series.

Shields struck out a season-high 10 for the Royals (79-71), who moved within 2 ½ games of the AL's second wild-card berth. The Indians (81-69) remained a half-game back of Texas, which lost to Tampa Bay earlier in the night in a matchup of teams leading the wild-card race.

"Every game is important," Shields said. "This is what we live for, this is what we play for, September baseball, and hopefully we have a chance to go to the playoffs."

Shields (12-9) allowed only Lonnie Chisenhall's solo homer before turning the game over to his stingy bullpen. Wade Davis, Luke Hochevar and Tim Collins did the rest in a steady drizzle.

Perez finished with three hits and was among six different players to drive in a run for Kansas City, which is chasing its first postseason berth since winning the 1985 World Series.

"We have the talent to compete each and every night," said Lorenzo Cain, who drove in one of the runs. "You need a little luck every now and then, but we have the talent to compete.

Scott Kazmir (8-9) gave up four runs in 5-plus innings for the Indians. He didn't get a whole lot of help from his offense, which racked up a season-high 17 strikeouts.

"I did everything I could," Kazmir said. "I battled my butt off to get where I was."

Accustomed to pitching in important games, Shields kept the Indians guessing all night. He fanned three in the fifth after Chisenhall went deep, and the only other time he was in trouble was the first, when Shields stranded runners on second and third.

"He knows how to handle his emotions and channel it to his benefit, but he also knows how to transfer it to his teammates," Royals manager Ned Yost said. "He knows what's at stake and he's getting after it. He's into it."

Billy Butler started the scoring by driving in Emilio Bonifacio with a two-out single in the first, and then Kansas City tacked on another run in the third thanks to some hustle.

Alex Gordon struck out swinging but raced to first base when Kazmir's wild pitch went to the backstop. He reached third on Eric Hosmer's single and scored on Perez's two-out base knock.

"When Scott left the game, we're still in striking distance," Indians manager Terry Francona said. "We didn't finish a couple of plays and it got away from us."

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