KANSAS CITY -- Right-hander Andrew Triggs, a former Royals farmhand, silenced the team that drafted him on four hits through six scoreless innings, while Jed Lowrie drove in three runs as the A's beat the punchless Royals, 8-3, at Kauffman Stadium on Wednesday.
Triggs was traded from the Royals to the Orioles in 2015, then released by the O's in '16 before being claimed by the A's in March of last year. Triggs seemingly has found a home in the A's rotation after his second strong start.
"He's been great," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "There are some pretty good left-handed hitters in that lineup. You expect him to make some of the righties take some bad swings, but he had some lefties taking some bad swings, so he's off to a great start. Confidence-wise, that's big for him to get off to this kind of start."
Triggs did not allow an earned run in 5 2/3 innings in his first start against the Angels. This time, he breezed through the Royals' lineup, walking one and striking out three.
"It's fun," Triggs said. "Once the lights turn on and the real games begin, it's when you really want to perform, so I'm pretty pleased with the way things have gone. The biggest thing is to nail down a series win the second game in, so it's exciting."
"We're just not getting it done," Royals manager Ned Yost said. "You can make all the excuses you want, but we're just not getting it done."
Mondesi's home run went an estimated 436 feet, according to Statcast™, with an exit velocity of 103.1 mph.
"I wasn't sure I got it over the fence," Mondesi said. "But I think it was the hardest ball I've hit this year."
Royals starter Jason Hammel gave up four earned runs on seven hits in 4 2/3 innings.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED Four-star catch: A's center fielder Rajai Davis helped keep the Royals from taking an early lead in the second. Salvador Perez led off the inning with a double to right-center. With two outs and Perez on third, Alcides Escobar lined a ball toward left-center field that appeared would drop. But Davis made a running, lunging catch. According to Statcast™, Davis covered 64 feet in four seconds. The catch had a 41-percent probability.
"Shoot, if that ball falls, with two outs, a man on second, it could be a different game, because you get that early run and who knows what happens," Triggs said. More >
Game, set, match: The A's led, 4-0, after five innings and scored two more quick runs in the sixth. Then, Lowrie, who had a sacrifice fly earlier, came up with the bases loaded and one out and promptly blasted a two-run double off the right-field wall against Royals reliever Chris Young. That stretched the A's lead to 8-0 and chased many Royals fans to the exits. It was Lowrie's first three-RBI game since Sept. 13, 2015, when he was with the Astros.
"Jed's a foot away from a grand slam," Melvin said, "but we were just nicking them up enough, one run at a time, one situational at-bat at a time and we ended up having a nice little lead."
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS Alex Gordon of the Royals made his first start in right field since 2010, and just the fourth of his career there.
MAJOR LEAGUE DEBUT
Royals rookie right-hander Jake Junis, who was called up from Triple-A Omaha on Wednesday, made his Major League debut in the ninth inning. The A's loaded the bases off Junis with one out, but he got out of it after a nifty 3-2-3 double play started by Eric Hosmer.
"I think I held it together emotionally pretty well," Junis said. "They made such a good double play, it bailed me out."
WHAT'S NEXT A's: Right-hander Jesse Hahn will be on the mound at Kauffman Stadium on Thursday at 5:15 p.m. PT for his first start of the season. Hahn was left off the Opening Day roster, but he was promoted within days to pitch out of the bullpen. His strong six-inning relief appearance in Texas last week was enough to convince Oakland to have him pitch against the Royals in place of Raul Alcantara, who struggled in his lone start.
Royals: Left-hander Jason Vargas (1-0, 1.50) makes his second start of the season as the Royals take on the A's at 7:15 p.m. CT on Thursday. Vargas went six-plus innings against the Astros in his 2017 debut, giving up one run on six hits and striking out six in the win.