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Yost pleased with Odorizzi's debut, despite loss

The SportsXchange

Jake Odorizzi did not get a victory in his major league debut Sunday, but the Kansas City Royals' 22-year-old right-hander was impressive.

Odorizzi restricted the Cleveland Indians to a pair of Shin-Soo Choo singles and no runs the first five innings. He yielded three runs on four consecutive hits, including a two-run Carlos Santana homer, in the sixth before being pulled in the Royals' 15-4 loss.

His final line read three runs on six hits, one walk and three strikeouts in 5 1/3 innings.

"I thought Jake threw the ball really well, the first five innings really, really good," Royals manager Ned Yost said. "They got three off him in the sixth. I was proud of him. I thought he located his pitches well. I thought he had a good game plan. I thought he competed very well. I'm very pleased.

"I thought he did a great job of getting ahead of the hitters. They were swinging through 91 miles per hour fastballs like they were 96 miles per hour fastballs. So he's created some deception in delivery, commanded the ball extremely well. I thought did a really nice job, good enough to warrant another look."

Yost said Odorizzi would start again Saturday at Cleveland.

"I gave up the first (hit to Choo), and that settled me in a little bit," Odorizzi said. "I started making pitches. I had trouble with him early on. The last inning, a few hits fell in, and I gave up the big one. If I can keep the ball down longer into the game, I think things will be really well. When I had success today was when I kept the ball down."

Did the Tribe adjust to Odorizzi in the sixth, his third time through the batting order?

"It might have been a little bit of both," Odorizzi said. "I left some pitches up in the zone, and those were the pitches that got hit. For the majority of the game, I was hitting my spots and throwing the ball where I wanted to. I was happy with everything up until that point. I'd like to have that sixth inning back, but you just can't do that.

"Overall, I thought it went pretty well for the first time. We ended up getting a loss, and that's the only thing that mattered."
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