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Maier leads Royals to 8-2 spring victory

March 4, 2011

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— The Los Angeles Angels are expecting big things from Ervin Santana again this season.

The right-hander recorded four outs in his first spring training start Thursday, allowing two runs and two hits in the Angels’ 8-2 loss to the Kansas City Royals.

Santana went 17-10 with a 3.92 earned-run average last season, setting career highs for wins, complete games (four) and innings (222 2/3). He figures to be Los Angeles’ No. 3 starter this year behind Jered Weaver and Dan Haren.

Santana walked one and struck out one against the Royals, finishing with 38 pitches.

Mitch Maier went 4-for-4 with two RBIs for Kansas City, which finished with 11 hits. Kila Ka’aihue had two hits and drove in a run.

“Mitch Maier was the star of the game,” Royals manager Ned Yost said.

Kyle Davies worked two innings in his second spring start for Kansas City. The right-hander allowed two runs and two hits.

“The off-speed stuff has been pretty good so far,” said Davies, who was 8-12 with a 5.34 ERA in 32 starts for the Royals in 2010. “I commanded my delivery pretty good. I commanded the baseball very good. There were a couple of pitches that got away.”

Royals closer Joakim Soria made his first spring appearance, striking out two in a scoreless inning.

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