Vargas earns MLB-best 10th victory

Royals lefty allows three runs in six frames vs. Angels

Vargas earns MLB-best 10th victory

ANAHEIM -- Royals left-hander Jason Vargas maybe wasn't at the top of his game, but he was plenty good when it counted as he navigated through six innings and helped steer the Royals to a 7-3 win over the Angels on Sunday.

Vargas gave up eight hits and three runs, and for his efforts he became Major League Baseball's first 10-game winner to go along with his sterling 2.27 ERA.

Vargas, though, didn't seem overly impressed with his win total.

"I'll take it. That's for sure," Vargas said. "But I don't know if I'm going to look much into it beyond that. It's just nice to have more wins than losses."

Vargas' day started with some concern. Cameron Maybin opened the Angels' first with a line-shot single to left. Kole Calhoun then roped a line drive that just missed being a home run, instead bouncing off the very top of the right-field wall and back into play for an RBI double.

Calhoun's double gets confirmed

Later in the inning, Andrelton Simmons ripped an RBI single to left and Vargas and the Royals were in a 2-0 hole.

Vargas said he didn't make any particular adjustments after the first inning.

"The ones that they hit were right over the middle," Vargas said. "The one to Calhoun, I was lucky it didn't leave the park. And the one to Simmons was right over the plate. Just didn't make any quality pitches at that point."

From there, Vargas grinded through without any major trouble until the sixth inning when the Angels loaded the bases with none out with the Royals leading, 7-2.

But Vargas got Danny Espinosa to pop out to short right. Ben Revere brought home one run with a sacrifice fly but after a long battle, Vargas got catcher Juan Graterol to pop out.

"I think that [Espinosa] was probably the most key out," Vargas said. "That got us into position to get a double play and not let any runs in. After that it was just kind of a grind.

"I put us in a situation where we could have let them back in the game. So it's nice to make a couple of big pitches and get a couple of big outs."

Royals manager Ned Yost said he wasn't especially worried that inning.

"He did what he does best -- limit the damage," Yost said.

And don't look now, but Vargas appears to be putting himself into position for an invite to the All-Star Game presented by MasterCard.

"I don't know about that," Vargas said. "I've never been invited to the [Midsummer] Classic. We'll just see how things shake out."

Jeffrey Flanagan has covered the Royals since 1991, and for MLB.com since 2015. Follow him on Twitter @FlannyMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.