TORONTO (AP)—Runelvys Hernandez picked a perfect time to throw Kansas City’s first shutout by a starter in more than two years.
Hernandez outpitched Blue Jays ace Roy Halladay for his first career shutout, leading the Royals over Toronto 2-0 Saturday.
“When you are facing a guy like Halladay you have to give your best,” Hernandez said. “I tried my best. I played with my heart because he’s a competitor.”
Hernandez (4-8) allowed seven hits in his eighth start since being recalled from the minors. He struck out four and walked one in Kansas City’s first shutout by a starter since Brian Anderson did it August 4, 2004, against the Chicago White Sox. The Royals’ two other shutouts this year were combined efforts.
Hernandez threw 86 of his 121 pitches for strikes.
“He was awesome,” Kansas City manager Buddy Bell said. “He wasn’t in the middle of the plate at all. He was in and out, changing speeds.”
“We needed this too,” Bell said. “We needed this kind of a game. We haven’t had one all year, I don’t think. It was awesome.”
Teahen homered off the right-field foul screen in the first. Shealy homered to center off Halladay in the second.
“You don’t see Halladay outpitched very often so this is pretty big,” Teahen said. “You know Halladay is going to keep the score down, so your guy has to really step it up and he did today.”
Halladay (16-4) lost despite pitching a four-hitter for his fourth complete game of the season. The 2003 AL Cy Young Award retired 12 straight after Shealy’s homer. He struck out seven and walked one.
“It seems like there’s always a couple of those every year where basically you get outpitched sometimes,” Halladay said. “Those are the toughest ones. You tip your hat, swallow your pride and go back to work the next day.”
Toronto hasn’t won consecutive games in two weeks.
Bell was ejected in the fifth for arguing balls and strikes. He was upset that plate umpire Joe West didn’t call a strike on Toronto’s Alex Rios after a checked swing.
It’s the sixth ejection of the season for Bell and the second from West. Bell yelled at West that he was “awful” in a profanity-laced rant just before he left the dugout.
Hernandez has pitched six or more innings in only six of his 15 starts this season. His previous career high for innings was 8 1-3 against Detroit on Sept. 15, 2002. … Toronto hasn’t won consecutive games in two weeks.