Duffy 'at home on mound' in return from DL

Pitch count intact, starter fans eight over five frames vs. Cleveland

Duffy 'at home on mound' in return from DL

CLEVELAND --- In his first start since Aug. 22, one might have expected Royals left-hander Danny Duffy to show some rust.

Nope.

Duffy's stuff was electric, and his command was on point in a five-inning outing, giving up just one hit and one earned run while walking none and striking out eight in the Royals' 3-2 loss to the Indians on Sunday at Progressive Field. Duffy was on a 60-70 pitch count, and he made it to 62, with 47 strikes.

"I felt good," Duffy said. "The action on everything was good, so I was happy with my effort today.

"I felt like I expected to go six, maybe pitch into the seventh. I ended it with 62 pitches. The pitch count was never on my mind, because I know I'm going to go out there and pound the zone."

Yost on loss to Indians

Duffy's only mistake was a thigh-high changeup to Edwin Encarnacion in the fourth inning. Encarnacion drilled a two-run home run, plating Austin Jackson, who had reached on an error ahead of him.

"He was probably sitting on that changeup," Duffy said. "But if I locate it better, it's probably a ground ball. But it was right where his bread box is."

All in all, though, Duffy simply was thrilled to be back on the mound again.

"I've been looking forward to pitching for a long time," Duffy said. "It was nice to get back out there. I felt at home on the mound. I felt comfortable. Right where I belong."

Duffy said he should have no problem making two more starts this season.

"If today is a good judge," Duffy said, "I'll be able to finish strong until the end."

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.