KC clobbers Arizona with Anderson cycle

KC clobbers Arizona behind Anderson cycle

ROYALS 24, D-BACKS 9
at Tucson
Friday, March 19

Royals at the plate: Brian Anderson hit for the cycle in the first four innings as he hit a two-run triple in the first, an RBI double in the second, a two-run single in the third and a two-run homer in the fourth. Willie Bloomquist, Mike Aviles, Josh Fields and Anderson each had three hits in the opening three innings. Aviles and Fields had six runs scored between them. Anderson had seven RBIs in four innings and Fields had five RBIs in three.

D-backs at the plate: Mark Reynolds' infield single to open the second was the D-backs' first hit off Kansas City starter Brian Bannister. Augie Ojeda had the other hit off Bannister -- a lead-off third-inning single to center. Ojeda drove in the first Arizona run with a single in the fifth. Rusty Ryal followed with an RBI double. Kelly Johnson drove in the third run of the inning with a sacrifice fly and Cole Gillespie did the same for the fourth.

Royals on the mound: Bannister pitched four scoreless innings, allowing two hits and a walk while striking out three.

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D-backs on the mound: Billy Buckner was shellacked for eight earned runs on nine hits with three strikeouts, a walk and a wild pitch in his two innings. He actually struck out the side in the first inning as 10 of the 16 batters he faced reached base, including five of the first six. Chad Qualls pitched a third of an inning in relief and was equally damaged, allowing six earned runs on five hits with a walk and a strikeout.

Worth noting: In the first three innings, the top four hitters in the Royals' lineup were 11-for-12 with 11 runs scored and five RBIs. The Royals scored 27 consecutive runs without response from the opposition, including the last 10 in Thursday's 16-14 loss to the Padres. The Royals sent 13 batters to the plate in the third and scored seven times.

Cactus League records: Royals: 7-6; D-backs: 9-8.

Up next: The D-backs travel to Peoria to play the Mariners on Saturday. It'll bring a premier pitching matchup between Dan Haren and Felix Hernandez, a pair of right-handers who are the No. 1 starters for their respective teams. Haren is making his fourth start of the spring and is 1-0 with a 1.04 ERA -- one earned run in 8 2/3 innings. He'll be followed by Esmerling Vasquez, Juan Gutierrez, Jordan Noberto and Leo Rosales.

The Royals have split-squad road games in the Phoenix area on Saturday. They play the Cubs in Mesa and the Brewers in Maryvale. With Opening Day only two weeks away, the Royals will get a chance to view several pitchers in a pair of road split-squad games against the Cubs and the Brewers on Saturday. Edgar Osuna, Robinson Tejeda, John Parish and Bryan Bullington will square off against Chicago's Carlos Zambrano in Mesa. Kyle Davies, Anthony Lerew, Roman Colon, Brad Thompson and Josh Rupe will pitch against the Brewers at Maryvale Park. Yovani Gallardo will start for the Brewers.

Barry M. Bloom is a national reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.