KANSAS CITY -- After Friday night's third hit batsman, home-plate umpire Gary Cederstrom decided that it was time to do some finger pointing.
Cederstrom issued warnings to both benches following Indians reliever Scott Maine's eighth-inning plunking of Royals outfielder David Lough. For the third time in the game, a manager and the team's athletic trainer came out to take a look.
All this followed Royals reliever Tim Collins hitting Cleveland outfielder Shin-Soo Choo in the hand in the seventh. The hit by pitch -- Choo's 13th of the season -- broke the skin and caused bleeding, which needed to be bandaged.
Choo came around to score on Carlos Santana's two-run single, but the Indians dropped a 6-3 decision in the series opener. In a close game, Choo said he didn't think Kansas City was trying to hit him.
Earlier in the game, Indians starter Justin Masterson hit Alcides Escobar in the forearm.
"That's the way things are nowadays in Major League Baseball," Cleveland manager Manny Acta said. "I didn't think that they hit Choo on purpose. We certainly didn't hit [Lough] on purpose either, but the umpires nowadays are extra careful and they don't want things to get out of hand. We're not going to hit a guy on 3-0 with a runner on third, the game is still close. And if we're going to get back at them for hitting Choo, we're certainly not going pick David Lough to get even."
It wasn't the first time these teams have hit the opposing batters this season. On April 14 at Kauffman Stadium, Choo was hit in the second inning, forcing benches to clear. The following inning, Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas was hit by a pitch. The benches cleared again, and three Indians -- Jeanmar Gomez, Jack Hannahan and Acta -- were ejected.