Homers lift Royals over Giants

SURPRISE, Ariz. — The defending champion San Francisco Giants head back to the Bay Area with some uncertainty in their roster.

Jonathan Sanchez and a Giants' team made of mostly minor leaguers lost to the Kansas City Royals 7-4 Sunday.

Manager Bruce Bochy, though, was thinking about opening day.

"We've not finalized the team, yet," Bochy said. "We'll go to San Francisco and play a couple of games there. That's how close it is."

With injuries to closer Brian Wilson and outfielder Cody Ross leaves two big holes in the lineup.

Ross' injury — a torn calf that will keep him out three weeks — could open up a spot for first baseman Brandon Belt, who hit .352 with 23 home runs and 112 RBIs last year in three minor league stops in his first professional season. He is hitting .292 with three home runs, five doubles and 13 RBIs in 26 spring training games, but played only 13 games above Double-A last year.

"I like what I see from him on both sides of the ball," Bochy said. "He's done a great job at first. He's gives you quality at-bats, good balance up there, good discipline at the plate. You can see why this kid had a good year last year.

He said the injury to Ross "does make it easier maybe a little bit" more to keep Belt.

"We lost a pretty good bat in Cody Ross," Bochy said. "That will come into play when we do make our decisions. It gives us another left-handed bat in the lineup if he's on the club. We do have some other options."

Blue Jays 9, Orioles (ss) 5

At Dunedin, Fla., Ricky Romero, Toronto's opening-day pitcher, ended his spring the same way he started it, getting knocked around, giving up runs and getting frustrated.

Baltimore tagged him for eight hits and five runs in 5 1-3 innings before the Blue Jays rallied to beat the split-squad Orioles. Toronto's Rajai Davis went 5 for 5 with two doubles and a triple and scored three times.

"I've said many times I hate giving up runs, especially when (I'm) going good and feeling good. I'm just glad (spring training) is over and we can move on to the season," said Romero, who allowed 17 runs and 24 hits over 19 1-3 innings in five starts.

"I've done everything I had to do to get my body ready and my confidence is good. I know what I can do when the lights turn on," he said. "I'm ready for Friday. I can't be happier than it's going to be here pretty soon."

The Blue Jays open at home against Minnesota.

Jeremy Guthrie, Baltimores opening-game starter, fared no better against the Blue Jays, allowing four runs and 12 of the Blue Jays' 20 hits in five innings. But while he faced Toronto's likely opening-game lineup, Romero pitched to a batting order devoid of projected starters.

"I would have liked to have been able to get more quality pitches, would have loved to have gotten more outs and been a little more efficient in the strike zone, but overall it feels all right," said Guthrie, who is a former Ashland High standout.

Rangers 5, Mariners 4, 10 innings

At Peoria, Ariz., Michael Young and the Texas Rangers took advantage of Seattle ace Felix Hernandez's absence.

With Hernandez facing minor leaguers rather than his division opponent, Young had three hits and three RBIs, including a broken bat single in the 10th inning to lift the Rangers to a victory over the Mariners.

The AL Cy Young winner is scheduled to face the Rangers in his second start of the season in Texas. King Felix pitched two-hit ball over seven innings in the intrasquad game. He retired the first 14 batters he faced and struck out 10. He threw 103 pitches.

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