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Yankees 3, Royals 7: Yankees can't overcome Michael Pineda's early struggles

The first inning is not Michael Pineda's friend.

Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

Coming into this game, Michael Pineda's ERA in the first inning was 12.00. He did not lower it tonight, in fact, he raised it. Pineda allowed four runs in the first inning, immediately putting the Yankees in a hole. The Royals would tack on more runs, and the offense only managed three themselves, dooming the Yankees to a 7-3 loss.

Despite coming off his best outing of the year in the previous game, bad Pineda reappeared quickly in this game. Alcides Escobar singled to lead off the inning. However, he was thrown out trying to steal second by Brian McCann. That didn't really change the trajectory of the inning, though. Lorenzo Cain was hit by a pitch. Eric Hosmer singled. Kendrys Morales walked. Pineda then got Alex Gordon to fly out, but it was deep enough to score Cain. After all that, Pineda was an out away from getting out of the jam without too much damage. However, Salvador Perez insured that wouldn't be the case. He took one over the left field wall for a three-run home run. The Royals quickly took a 4-0 lead.

The Yankees got on the board in the bottom of the second. Carlos Beltran led off the inning with a home run, cutting the Yankees' deficit to three runs. Two batters later, Aaron Hicks reached with a single. A Didi Gregorius ground out moved him to second. Chase Headley then blooped a single into left, scoring Hicks. After two innings, the Yankees trailed 4-2.

Three innings later, the Yankees' offense cut into the deficit further. Brett Gardner drew a lead-off walk, and moved to second on Starlin Castro's double. McCann then grounded one to first. Hosmer knocked it down, but couldn't field it cleanly at first. He eventually got the out at first, but Gardner scored, making it 4-3.

Pineda settled down somewhat after the first inning. He got into some trouble a couple times after that, but managed to escape. In the sixth inning, he got two outs, but then walked Christian Colon. After allowing a single to Jarrod Dyson, Pineda's day would be over. Nick Goody came in for Pineda, but he couldn't clean up the mess. After Goody hit Escobar, Cain drove in two runs with a single. Phil Coke finally got out of the inning after that, but it was now 6-3 Royals.

Coke got out of trouble in the sixth, but he showed why he's Phil Coke in the seventh. Morales led off the top of the seventh with a home run, giving the Royals an insurance run.

The fifth inning, one-run deficit would be as close as the Yankees would get. After the fifth, the Yankees' offense was done for the night. After taking the first two games of the series, the Yankees dropped the third by a score of 7-3.

The Yankees and Royals will wrap up their series in the Bronx tomorrow night at 7:05 eastern. Nathan Eovaldi will get the start for the Yankees, while his counterpart for Kansas City will be Yankees' legend Ian Kennedy.

Box score.