KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — James Paxton keeps helping the Seattle Mariners get back on track.
Paxton tied a Mariners’ record by winning his seventh straight start, and Seattle beat the Kansas City Royals 5-2 Friday night to move back over .500.
Paxton (12-3) did not allow a hit until Mike Moustakas’ single with one out in the fifth, and Brandon Moss’ two-out single ended Paxton’s scoreless streak at 21 innings. Paxton gave up two runs and four hits in six innings with one walk, seven strikeouts and a pair of wild pitches.
He is 7-3 in a dozen starts after Mariners’ losses.
“That was huge for us to bounce back from that loss yesterday,” said Jarrod Dyson, who drove in the go-ahead run in the seventh inning.
Scott Bankhead won seven straight starts in 1989 and Jamie Moyer in 2003.
“They fouled off a lot more balls and scraped some hits together,” Paxton said. “I had a couple of wild pitches there that hurt us. That stuff happens.”
David Phelps, Nick Vincent and Edwin Diaz each followed with a perfect inning as Seattle improved to 13-8 since the All-Star break. Diaz got his 22nd save in 26 chances.
Jason Hammel (5-9) gave up three runs and six hits in 6 1/3 innings. Kansas City fell 3½ games back of AL Central-leading Cleveland.
“I’ve got to do a better job in the seventh of either making quality pitches or just doing a better job of putting up a goose egg there,” Hammel said. “It’s very frustrating.”
Danny Valencia drove in Jean Segura with sacrifice flies in the first and eighth innings.
Paxton’s wild pitch in the sixth scored Whit Merrifield and gave Kansas City a 2-1 lead. Merrifield doubled and advanced to third on Lorenzo Cain’s single.
“An outstanding come-from-behind win,” Mariners manager Scott Servais said. “Both starters were throwing the ball very well. I didn’t think there’d be a lot of runs scored, but we were able to put some pressure on them and mount an inning and put a crooked number up there, which was great. Paxton continues to really dominate when he’s out there. I thought the first time through the lineup he was right on everything.
Guillermo Heredia’s tying double chased Hamel in a three-run seventh, and Dyson and Leonys Martin hit RBI singles off Ryan Buchter.
CANO’S MILESTONE DOUBLE
Robinson Cano’s first-inning double was his 500th.
Mariners: DH Nelson Cruz was a late scratch with neck and shoulder spasms. … INF/OF Shawn O’Malley was activated from the 60-day DL and optioned to Triple-A Tacoma. O’Malley had an appendectomy in March and an arthroscopic right shoulder procedure in May. He hit .311 with two home runs in 14 minor league rehab games. … The Mariners sent RHP Christian Bergman outright to Tacoma.
Royals: C Salvador Perez left after feeling discomfort in his side while swinging in the sixth inning and was replaced by Drew Butera. “He’s over getting a MRI, so we’ll know tomorrow,” Royals manager Ned Yost said. “”It’s the right side, but it’s a different spot, so it’s a little more concerning.”
RHP Felix Hernandez (5-4), who is 2-4 with a 3.00 ERA in seven games at Kauffman Stadium, starts Saturday for Seattle and LHP Danny Duffy (7-6) for Kansas City. Duffy is 1-1 with a 2.25 ERA in seven games against the Mariners.