Kansas City Royals' MJ Melendez follows through for a grand...

Kansas City Royals' MJ Melendez follows through for a grand slam during the sixth inning of a baseball game against the Kansas City Royals Saturday, June 15, 2024, in Los Angeles. Credit: AP/Mark J. Terrill

LOS ANGELES — MJ Melendez hit a grand slam to conclude a 12-pitch at-bat, Seth Lugo became the AL's first 10-game winner and the Kansas City Royals beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 7-2 Saturday night as Yoshinobu Yamamoto's start was cut short after two innings due to triceps tightness.

“I got it decent, but I didn’t feel like I got all of it,” Melendez said. “It was also my first time playing here this weekend so I wasn’t sure how the ball flies. I was super happy when it went over (the wall).”

Kansas City loaded the bases on three straight walks by Blake Treinen. Melendez fouled off six straight pitches with a 2-2 count, but worked the count full when Treinen threw a cutter inside.

Treinen (2-1) went to the cutter again on the next pitch, but it was slightly elevated inside the strike zone as Melendez drove it over the right-field wall for his first career grand slam and a 5-2 lead.

According to Baseball Reference, it is only the second time since 1970 there has been a grand slam on a full count with at least 12 pitches in the at-bat. In 2018, Mookie Betts cleared the bases for Boston on the 13th pitch against Toronto's J.A. Happ.

The Cubs' Gary Scott also had a grand slam on a 13-pitch, at-bat against Philadelphia's Kyle Abbott in 1992, but that was on a 2-2 count.

“He threw a lot of pitches that inning. So I was able to get the tail end of it. He might not have been as sharp as he was against other hitters,” Melendez said about facing Treinen. “I feel like the more pitches you see as a hitter, the bigger advantage you have. I know the cutter is his go-to pitch and he doesn't want to walk that run in.”

Kansas City Royals shortstop Bobby Witt Jr. can't get to...

Kansas City Royals shortstop Bobby Witt Jr. can't get to a ball hit for a single by Los Angeles Dodgers' Mookie Betts during the first inning of a baseball game Saturday, June 15, 2024, in Los Angeles. Credit: AP/Mark J. Terrill

Treinen threw 39 pitches with 22 strikes in two-thirds of an inning. That's the most he has thrown in a relief outing since he threw 44 for Oakland in a 2018 game at Toronto.

“I feel like the cutter was the pitch I had the most feel for but it also handcuffed me because I can't keep throwing anyone in this league the same pitch,” Treinen said. “When you walk people, this league makes you pay. It doesn't matter who the hitter is, when you give them three bases it never bodes well.”

The grand slam also helped give Kansas City a much-needed win after it had dropped five of six coming in.

Lugo (10-2) allowed two runs and six hits in six innings. The right-hander — who also leads the AL in innings (97 1/3) and is fifth in ERA (2.40) — struck out four and walked one to join Philadelphia's Ranger Suárez as the only pitchers in the majors with 10 wins.

Kansas City Royals shortstop Bobby Witt Jr. can't get to...

Kansas City Royals shortstop Bobby Witt Jr. can't get to a ball hit for a single by Los Angeles Dodgers' Mookie Betts during the first inning of a baseball game Saturday, June 15, 2024, in Los Angeles. Credit: AP/Mark J. Terrill

“It feels great. I never got to 10 wins in the big leagues or in the minors. I've been waiting for that one,” said Lugo, whose previous high in wins was eight with San Diego last season.

Yamamoto, who had thrown over 100 pitches in four consecutive starts going into Saturday, had his scheduled start on Thursday against Texas pushed back for extra rest.

The right-hander threw only 14 strikes on 28 pitches against the Royals. He allowed one hit and one walk with one strikeout.

Yamamoto said through his interpreter that he let the coaches know during the game and they decided to pull him.

“After that second inning, he just felt that he could go out there, but it just wasn’t coming out and his triceps was tight, and so that’s when we pulled the plug,” manager Dave Roberts said.

Gavin Lux had a two-run single with the bases loaded in the fourth gave the Dodgers a 2-1 lead. Los Angeles has lost three of four.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Royals: C Salvador Perez was out of the lineup due to right knee inflammation after leaving during the eighth inning of Friday's game. An MRI didn't show anything structurally wrong.

Dodgers: 3B Max Muncy (right oblique strain) is taking another week off from swinging and is just fielding grounders and running.

UP NEXT

The teams wrap up their series Sunday afternoon. Dodgers RHP Tyler Glasnow (6-5, 3.24) is 3-0 in day games. Royals RHP Brady Singer (4-3, 3.30) allowed seven runs (six earned) in his last start on June 11 against the Yankees.

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