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KC@LAA: Melky powers a solo homer to open scoring

ANAHEIM -- Maybe Mike Moustakas brought the Royals good luck.

Certainly Jeff Francis, Greg Holland and Joakim Soria brought them good pitching and Moustakas, in his Major League debut, contributed his first hit to a two-run inning in the Royals' 4-2 victory over the Los Angeles Angels on a 65-degree Friday night with 38,254 fans in the stands.

For the Royals, it marked their first back-to-back victories since May 19-20, three weeks ago.

Moustakas, who went 1-for-3 with a walk, was pleased to get his first hit but was diplomatically team-oriented after the game.

"The day would've ended well if I'd have gone 0-for-5 and we got the 'W,'" Moustakas said. "That's the most important thing that happens in any game. That's why you play the game -- to win."

Francis worked the first 6 1/3 innings and really had problems only in the sixth, when the Angels got both of their runs during a five-hit barrage. Howard Kendrick's double and Bobby Abreu's single knocked in the runs, and it could've been worse if not for left fielder Alex Gordon's throw.

When Abreu tried to score a third run on Erick Aybar's hit, Gordon gunned him down with a bullet throw to catcher Brayan Pena.

"With that throw home, that's a game-changer," Francis said. "It swings a lot of momentum, and I get the next guy out and it's 4-2."

Angels manager Mike Scioscia didn't second-guess his third-base coach, Dino Ebel, on sending Abreu home.

"Dino's got terrific judgment out there," Scioscia said. "As Bobby rounded third I don't think he thought he would be able to score and slowed down a bit. Obviously it ended up being a play that hurt us. But believe me, I trust Dino's judgment. He's as good as there is down there."

After a one-out single in the seventh, the right-handed Holland took over for Francis. He got two quick outs and then worked a perfect eighth inning. For Holland, since being called up from Omaha, that's 12 2/3 scoreless innings in which he has 17 strikeouts. And opponents are just 5-for-48 (.104) against him.

"He's got great numbers," manager Ned Yost said. "Command is his biggest ally right now. The fact that he was 3-1 on Kendrick and then threw five or six consecutive strikes with fastballs to get him out was a great job."

Soria, despite running up 28 pitches as he wiggled out of a bases-loaded jam on Thursday night for a save against Toronto, was right back at it against LA, a team that roughed him up on Memorial Day in Kansas City.

This time Soria got through a one-two-three ninth, finishing with a strikeout of pinch-hitter Alberto Callaspo, for saves on successive days.

"I feel really good that I had the save against them, but the most important thing is that I've been pitching good," Soria said. "It doesn't matter what team it is."

The Royals' first two runs against right-hander Ervin Santana came on solo home runs by Melky Cabrera and Billy Butler. Yost saw that as an encouraging sign.

"I always dread facing him. His slider is as good as any slider we see all year long," Yost said. "We scored some runs off him in Kansas City and couldn't win the ballgame, so it's kind of an accomplishment to beat him here."

Two runs in the Royals' sixth gave the left-handed Francis a 4-0 lead. That began with Butler's walk followed by Moustakas' first big-league hit, a soft, broken-bat single to right field. It was a bat borrowed from Gordon.

"I owe 'Gordo' a bat right now because that was his," Moustakas said. "But it died a hero, a real big hero actually. It was nice to get that first one off the shoulder."

Then Santana gave up an RBI single to Chris Getz and a run-scoring double to Alcides Escobar, his first extra-base hit since May 12 at New York.

For Moustakas, game No. 1 was in the books. Playing practically in his own backyard, he had his own personal rooting section high in Angel Stadium.

"I heard them cheering on the first hit, which was awesome," Moustakas said. "Being able to have my family here for that is unbelievable."

The guy they call Moose did find one thing missing.

"I didn't hear any Moose calls," he said with a grin. "I heard a couple boos."

Welcome to the big leagues.

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