PHOENIX – Mike Moustakas homered and drove in four runs, Yordano Ventura pitched six solid innings and the Kansas City Royals beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 4-3 Wednesday night to win their fifth straight series.
Kansas City rolled over Arizona in the opener and had just enough offense for Ventura (9-8) to take the second game.
Moustakas, who was 1 for 13 to start the six-game road trip, hit a two-run homer off Josh Collmenter (8-6) in the third inning and added a run-scoring single off the right-hander in the fourth. He drove in another run on a fielder's choice in the ninth inning to make it 4-2 and Greg Holland gave up a sacrifice fly to Mark Trumbo in the bottom half before closing out his 32nd save.
Kansas City has won six of seven to keep pace with Detroit in the AL Central.
Miguel Montero had three hits for Arizona, which and stranded 11 runners.
The Royals turned the series opener into a laugher, scoring 10 runs on three swings. Nori Aoki hit a grand slam, Billy Butler had a three-run homer among his four hits, and Salvador Perez added a three-run shot in the 12-2 rout.
Kansas City had another long ball early against Collmenter, this one a two-run shot by Moustakas in the second inning, his team-leading 14th of the season. The Royals tacked on another run in the fourth, going up 3-2 on Moustaka's run-scoring single.
Collmenter was good against everyone except Moustakas, though, allowing one other hit while striking out six in six innings.
Ventura had at least seven strikeouts in his previous two starts, including a win over Minnesota after allowing a run in seven innings his last outing.
The rookie right-hander kept piling up the Ks against the Diamondbacks, notching eight while working around baserunners nicely. He gave up run-scoring singles to Aaron Hill and David Peralta in the third inning, but little else.
Ventura allowed eight hits.
Moustakas was initially called out on his fielder's choice in the ninth, but it was overturned upon review.
Diamondbacks: RHP Daniel Hudson made his first rehab appearance with Arizona's rookie league team Tuesday night, allowing a run on two hits with two strikeouts in an inning. He had Tommy John surgery for the second time last year and hasn't pitched in the majors since mid-2012.
Royals: RHP Jeremy Guthrie had his first scoreless appearance of the season the last time out, holding Oakland to three hits while striking out six in six innings on Saturday.
Diamondbacks: LHP Vidal Nuno, Thursday's starter, has yet to win with the Diamondbacks despite pitching decently since being traded from the New York Yankees. He's 0-2 with a 3.07 ERA in five starts with Arizona and allowed a run in six innings of a no-decision against Pittsburgh his last outing