KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The easy explanation for the 60th loss of this Royals season was a grand slam by Cleveland's Yan Gomes.
But a series of smaller self-inflicted blows preceding the blast proved damaging to the Royals in a 6-4 defeat at Kauffman Stadium.
After a laborious start, Royals' left-hander Danny Duffy retired 14 of 16 batters when he carried a 4-2 lead into the sixth inning. But designated hitter Edwin Encarnacion drew a walk on five pitches to open the frame and right fielder Brandon Guyer was slightly grazed by a 2-2 pitch.
First baseman Yonder Alonzo then hit a ground ball to the right of shortstop Adalberto Mondesi, whose throw to second was a fraction late.
Without getting a ball out of the infield, the Indians had the bases loaded. Gomes unloaded them when he deposited an 0-1 change-up from Duffy into the Indians bullpen.
It was the eighth grand slam the Royals have allowed this season, tying the franchise record with 77 games to be played, according to 610 Sports' Josh Vernier.
It's just part of the bad news for the Royals (25-60) who have dropped 24 of 29 games since the start of June and are on pace to lose 114 games.
A moribund offense that has been largely to blame for the slide showed signs of life after Duffy allowed two runs in the top of the first inning. Lucas Duda's two-run homer to right field scored Rosell Herrera and tied the game in the bottom half. An inning later, Herrera doubled home Mondesi and Whit Merrifield to stake the Royals to a 4-2 lead.
It stayed that way until the Gomes grand slam. The Royals were set down in order in the sixth and seventh, then ran themselves out of a run in the eighth inning.
Salvador Perez was hit by an Oliver Perez pitch to open the frame, and two outs later took second on a single by Alex Gordon. Cody Allen entered the game and was greeted by a single to center by Hunter Dozier. The Indians were ready to concede the run, but third-base coach Mike Jirschele put up the stop sign.
When the throw went toward third, Perez ran home, but was thrown out by Francisco Lindor to end the threat.
Looking for a positive? The Royals had 12 hits, which snapped a 24-game streak in which they had not collected 10 hits in a game, the longest in the American League since Kansas City did it in 1967. That was the A's, of course, and they would bolt for Oakland after season.