Three homers help Halos halt Royals’ streak

“If you go back to where he was last year, and if you go back to where he was at in Spring Training, he’s moved light years ahead,” Angels manager Mike Scioscia of Meyer’s performance. “That’s going to be important for his growth.”

“The more you’re out there, the more comfortable you get,” said Meyer, who lowered his ERA to 3.52 with the win. “It’s a matter of being consistent.”

Meyer's scoreless start Meyer’s scoreless start

KC@LAA: Meyer fans nine over six scoreless frames

Alex Meyer strikes out nine batters over six scoreless innings of work against the Royals

Cameron Maybin belted a home run off of Royals starter Jake Junis‘ first pitch of the game. The Kansas City rookie relinquished five runs on eight hits, including Pujols’ fifth-inning shot, permitting no walks and striking out six before exiting after 5 1/3 innings.

“I thought it was a decent pitch,” Junis said of the pitch to Pujols. “I thought he swung through the same pitch a couple of times before, but that’s why he’s one of the greatest hitters of all time.”

Royals’ confidence still high

Pujols' two-run homer Pujols’ two-run homer

KC@LAA: Pujols crushes a two-run homer vs. Royals

Albert Pujols belts a two-run home run to left-center field in the bottom of the 5th inning

Luis Valbuena added a three-run insurance home run off Royals reliever Chris Young during the Angels’ four-run seventh inning. Relievers Blake Parker, Cam Bedrosian and Yusmeiro Petit combined for three shutout innings to draw Los Angeles back to .500 at 36-36.

“We got on a little roll today,” Meyer said. “It was a big game for us after losing the first couple of the series.”

Valbuena's three-run home run Valbuena’s three-run home run

KC@LAA: Valbuena crushes a three-run home run

Luis Valbuena connects for a three-run home run to right-center field, extending the Angels’ lead to 9-0 in the bottom of the 7th inning

Kansas City blues: The Royals were unable to take advantage after winning a challenge during the top of the sixth inning. Danny Espinosa‘s error at second set the table for Jorge Bonifacio with runners on first and second with none out, but the right fielder grounded into 6-4-3 double play, and two at-bats later, Meyer struck out his ninth batter of the day, maintaining the Angels’ 5-0 lead.

“You don’t see many curve balls like that,” Royals manager Ned Yost said of Meyer. “[Astros starter Lance] McCullers has one. But not many guys have that.”

Meyer escapes a jam in the 6th Meyer escapes a jam in the 6th

KC@LAA: Meyer K’s Hosmer to escape a jam in the 6th

Alex Meyer strikes out Eric Hosmer to escape a jam with runners on in the top of the 6th inning

Breaking it open: Espinosa scored two with a bases-loaded single to give the Angels a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the fourth. Espinosa, who struggled through an 0-for-36 slump in early May, is 12-for-46 (.260) with 11 RBIs in his last 14 games.

Espinosa's two-run single Espinosa’s two-run single

KC@LAA: Espinosa rips a two-run single to center

Danny Espinosa finds a hole and delivers a two-run single to center field, giving the Angels a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the 4th inning

“They say a blind squirrel will find a nut every once in awhile. I guess I was able to find a nut.” — Maybin, on his 2-for-4 game

Dating back to May 14, Maybin has reached safely in 22 straight contests. More >

Maybin's leadoff home run Maybin’s leadoff home run

KC@LAA: Maybin belts a leadofff home run to center

Cameron Maybin connects for a leadoff home run to center and trots around the bases in the special Father’s Day blue uniform

Drew Butera was ruled out upon taking second base when Whit Merrifield grounded into a 6-4 putout, which was mishandled by Espinosa before he stepped on the base. The Royals challenged the call, and after review, the call was overturned and Butera was safe at second base. Kansas City is now 14-3 on challenges this season.

Royals reach after a challenge Royals reach after a challenge

KC@LAA: Royals win challenge after overturned call

The Royals get runners on first and second after they challenge a forceout at second base and the call is overturned

Royals: Left-hander Jason Vargas (9-3, 2.10 ERA) takes the mound for the Royals on Sunday at 2:37 p.m. CT in the series finale against the Angels. Vargas gave up one run over seven innings in the Royals’ 8-1 win over the Giants on Tuesday.

Angels: Right-hander JC Ramirez (6-4, 4.19) will take the ball for Sunday’s series finale against Kansas City at 12:37 p.m. PT. Ramirez tossed a career-high 111 pitches while drawing a no-decision in his last outing in the Angels’ 3-2 win over the Yankees. He allowed two runs and struck out seven batters in 6 2/3 innings.

Watch every out-of-market regular-season game live on MLB.TV.

Jeffrey Flanagan has covered the Royals since 1991, and for since 2015. Follow him on Twitter @FlannyMLB.

Kaelen Jones is a reporter for based in Los Angeles.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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