ANAHEIM, Calif. — Danny Duffy had a rooting section on the road and gave his pals plenty to cheer about.
The veteran left-hander from California won his third straight start and the Kansas City Royals stopped a four-game skid Sunday with a 5-1 victory over the Los Angeles Angels.
Hunter Dozier hit a two-run double to back Duffy (3-1), who allowed five hits over six effective innings for his first victory at Angel Stadium. He had about 40 friends and family members in attendance and said he appreciated everyone who made the 3 1/2-hour drive to support him. Duffy is from Lompoc, about 200 miles north of Anaheim.
His father, Dan, was on hand as part of the team trip for Royals dads.
“This state hasn’t been good to me in my career,” Duffy said with a chuckle. “It was nice to finally get a win in California. The Angels have always done a good job making me throw a lot of pitches. Today, I was able to make pitches when I needed to and get quick outs at times. It meant a lot for me to get a win here. I had a lot of people here and from my hometown. That helped me a lot, for sure. It was nice to hear familiar voices when I was coming off the field.”
Duffy worked out of trouble in the first inning before settling in. He struck out five and walked three.
A trio of Royals relievers combined for three scoreless innings to close it out. Kansas City had lost six of seven.
“I felt I threw the ball pretty well. Early on, I was a little more wild than I wanted to be,” Duffy said. “I was able to make pitches when I needed to. I threw my heater well, for the most part, and I was pleased with that.”
Kansas City scored three runs in the third to take the lead. Adalberto Mondesi’s single to right sent Whit Merrifield to third and he scored on Kole Calhoun’s error. Dozier’s two-out double made it 3-0.
“It was kind of one that was in that grey area — maybe I would have a chance to get to it. If I miss it, we’re in trouble,” Calhoun said. “So I decided to check up on that and it kind of skipped away from me. That’s a big part of the game right there. It led to a big inning for them. It’s something you really never want to happen. I thought it bounced a little different.”
Mike Trout had two hits for the Angels, including a first-inning double that gave him an extra-base hit in three consecutive games. He appears to be finding his swing and timing. A day earlier, he hit his 250th career home run.
Trout and Kevan Smith were each on base three times. Smith’s run-scoring double in the fourth scored Calhoun.
In the sixth, Duffy was hit in the lower left leg by Tommy La Stella’s comebacker. Royals manager Ned Yost and a trainer went out to check on Duffy, but he stayed in the game. He retired the next batter to end the inning and was done for the day after 106 pitches.
Tyler Skaggs (4-4) struck out seven and allowed four runs — three earned — on 110 pitches in 5 2/3 innings. He needed 24 pitches to get through a scoreless first inning and threw 72 pitches over the first three.
A struggling Chris Owings had an RBI single in the sixth to make it 4-1 and chase Skaggs.
SNAP OUT OF IT
Backup catcher Cam Gallagher singled off Angels reliever Noe Ramirez in the ninth to halt an 0-for-22 slide.
Royals: 1B Lucas Duda (back) is getting closer to a rehab assignment.
Angels: Calhoun was hit on the inside of his wrist by a pitch in the fourth and was checked by a trainer, but stayed in the game. He had the wrist wrapped in ice afterward and said the ball struck him on the meaty part of his wrist. He said he’ll be fine.
Royals: RHP Homer Bailey (4-4, 5.36 ERA) is scheduled to start Tuesday at St. Louis. In his last outing, he allowed six runs on a season-high eight hits in 4 1/3 innings.
Angels: RHP Felix Pena (2-1, 3.49 ERA) is set to pitch Monday night at home against Minnesota, though the Angels have used an opener in his last four outings. In those appearances, he is 2-0 with a 2.95 ERA.