Ryan Mountcastle’s pair of two-run HRs sends Orioles to 11-7 win vs. Royals

Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Tyler Wells was just hoping to hang around long enough to save the Baltimore bullpen, and maybe give the Orioles’ hot-hitting lineup a chance to get them back in the game against the Kansas City Royal.

“Whenever I say there’s no quit in this team,” Wells said later, “there’s no quit in this offense.”

That was evident by the fourth inning, when Ryan Mountcastle hit a two-run homer to help the Orioles wipe out an early three-run deficit with a five-run outburst. Mountcastle added another two-run homer the next inning and finished with five RBIs, helping the Orioles to an 11-7 victory over the Royals – and a 10th consecutive series-opening win.

“Just a great game offensively,” Orioles manager Brandon Hyde said. “Mountcastle was a huge part of our lineup.”

He wasn’t the only part, though. Adley Rutschman had four hits and an RBI, James McCann had three hits and also drove in a run, and the Orioles finished with 15 hits to go with eight walks against Kansas City pitching.

“They have a lot of ways to beat you,” Royals manager Matt Quatraro said.

Wells (2-1) allowed three hits over six innings but they were all homers: Bobby Witt Jr.‘s leadoff rocket, a two-run homer by MJ Melendez and a solo shot by Salvador Perez. Wells also walked three and struck out four.

Perez, who added a two-run homer in the seventh, left in the eighth inning when Anthony Santander‘s follow-through hit the catcher on his glove. Perez bruised his middle finger and Freddy Fermin handled the rest of the game.

Ryan Yarbrough (0-4) matched a Royals record by striking out the first five Baltimore batters, including Mountcastle, before things fell apart in the fourth. The power-hitting first baseman followed a double by Rutschman with his first two-run homer, and Yarbrough was pulled after 3 2/3 innings as the Orioles batted through the lineup and scored five times.

Mountcastle added another two-run shot off Jose Cuas in the fifth, his eighth homer of the season, then added a run-scoring double in the sixth, before the Orioles cruised the rest of the way to their 16th win in their last 20 games.

The Royals have lost 10 straight at Kauffman Stadium to match the third-longest streak in franchise history. They also had a pair of 11-game streaks end in 2012 and 2013, the year before they won the first of back-to-back AL pennants.

This bunch appears to be a long way from such lofty heights. The Royals fell to 7-23 under Quatraro, matching the 2005 team that lost 106 games for the worst 30-game start in franchise history.

“It’s not where we want to be right now,” Witt said. “You’re in the big leagues. You can’t stay away from that.”

Things started well for Kansas City on Tuesday night when Witt hit his first career leadoff homer and Melendez sent an 85 mph changeup deep to right field for a 3-0 lead. But after Yarbrough joined Gil Meche and Brady Singer as the only Royals to begin a game with five strikeouts, the Orioles quickly erased their deficit.

Mountcastle’s first homer took care of most of it, an RBI single by McCann tied the game, and Cedric Mullins added a two-run single later in the fourth. Mountcastle’s second two-run shot gave him his eighth career multi-homer game, and he helped the Orioles tack on three more runs in the sixth to put the game out of reach.

“I’m happy that we opened up another series with a win,” Hyde said.


On the at-bat that forced Perez out of the game, Santander eventually singled after seeing 16 pitches, including 12 consecutive foul balls. … Orioles RHP Yennier Cano allowed a single in the ninth to end a club-record 32 straight hitless at-bats to start the season. … The Negro Leagues Baseball Museum announced Tuesday it was planning to build a new 30,000-square foot facility in the 18th & Vine section of Kansas City. The museum is a popular attraction for teams visiting the Royals.


The Royals recalled INF Maikel Garcia, one of their top prospects, along with Fermin from Triple-A Omaha. DH Franmil Reyes was optioned to the same club and INF Nicky Lopez (appendicitis) placed on the 10-day IL.


Orioles: RHP Dillon Tate (flexor strain) allowed two runs in 1 1/3 innings in a rehab stint for Double-A Bowie on Tuesday. RHP Mychal Givens (left knee inflammation) pitched a scoreless inning in the same game against Erie.


RHP Kyle Gibson (3.93 ERA) tries to become the first Orioles pitcher to start 5-0 since Jimmy Key won his first eight decisions in 1997 as the series continues on Wednesday night. RHP Zack Greinke (0-4, 6.10) gets the start for the Royals.

McCutchen’s sacrifice fly lifts Pirates to 5-4 win, extends Athletics’ road losing streak to 15

Scott Galvin-USA TODAY Sports
1 Comment

PITTSBURGH – Andrew McCutchen’s tiebreaking sacrifice fly in the eighth inning lifted Pittsburgh to a 5-4 victory over Oakland on Monday night, extending the Pirates’ win streak to six games and sending the Athletics to their record-tying 15th consecutive road loss.

The 15 straight defeats away from home matches the Athletics’ record since they moved from Kansas City in 1968. Oakland set that mark in 1986.

The major league-worst Athletics (12-50) have lost five games in a row overall. They are on pace to finish the season exactly 100 games under .500 at 31-131.

“It’s tough,” Athletics manager Mark Kotsay said. “Tonight’s game, we didn’t play well enough to win the game. I don’t want to say we gave the game away but there were a lot of instances where we had a chance to capitalize on opportunities and didn’t do it.”

McCutchen also singled and drew three walks to go with two RBIs. The 2013 NL MVP now has 1,998 career hits.

With the score tied at 4, Ji Hwan Bae led off the decisive eighth inning with a single off Sam Moll (0-3) and advanced to third on Austin Hedges’ one-out single. McCutchen’s sac fly plated Bae.

“I was just trying to get the job done. I understand the situation there,” McCutchen said. “We just need to get the run. I was trying to bear down against a hard thrower and trying to get that run in as much as I can, and I was able to do it and have a good at-bat.”

Angel Perdomo (1-0) retired both hitters he faced. and Colin Holdeman pitched a scoreless ninth inning for his first career save. It was an eventful inning for Holderman as the first three batters reached base, but he struck out Carlos Perez with runners on the corners to end it.

“I began my career as a starting pitcher in the minor leagues but ever since I was switched to relief, this has been the goal, to get a save in the big leagues,” Holderman said.

Pittsburgh starter Johan Oviedo gave up three runs and four hits with five strikeouts and two walks.

Oakland left-hander JP Sears did not allow a hit until Mark Mathias’ leadoff single in the fifth but was unable to make it through the inning. Sears was charged with one run in 4 2/3 innings while allowing two hits, walking five and striking out six.

Sears has not allowed more than two runs in five consecutive starts. His nine no-decisions are the most in the major leagues.

Ryan Noda and Brent Rooker had two hits each for the Athletics.

The Athletics tied the score at 4-4 in the eighth inning on pinch-hitter Aledmys Diaz’s run-scoring double. Oakland left the bases loaded, though, when Nick Allen hit an inning-ending flyout.

Consecutive bases-loaded walks keyed a three-run sixth inning that put the Pirates 4-3. McCutchen and Bryan Reynolds each worked bases on balls off Shintaro Fujinami to tie the score at 3-all and pinch-hitter Jack Suwinski followed with a sacrifice fly.

The Athletics opened the scoring in the first inning when rookie Esteury Ruiz reached on catcher’s interference, stole his MLB-leading 30th base of the season and scored on Noda’s single. Seth Brown doubled in a run in the third and came home on Perez’s sacrifice fly to push Oakland’s lead to 3-0.

Connor Joe hit an RBI double for the Pirates in the fifth.

The Pirates drew 10 walks, their most in a game in nearly two years.

“We had a bunch of opportunities that we didn’t capitalize (on), but the thing I think I was most proud of is we got down and we didn’t rush to get back,” Pittsburgh manager Derek Shelton said. “We were still patient.”


Athletics: LHP Kirby Snead (strained shoulder) is expected to pitch in the Arizona Complex League on Tuesday, which will be his first game action since spring training. … RHP Freddy Tarnok (strained shoulder) will throw a bullpen on Tuesday.


Pirates catching prospect Henry Davis was promoted to Triple-A Indianapolis from Double-A Altoona. In 41 games at Double-A this season, the 23-year-old hit .284 with 10 home runs and seven stolen bases.

“He was performing offensively at a level where we felt like he was more than ready to meet the challenges,” Pirates general manager Ben Cherington said. “He improved as an offensive player even since spring training, focusing on the things we were challenging him on. Defensively, he’s made strides too.”

Davis was the first overall selection in the 2021 amateur draft from the University of Louisville.


Athletics RHP James Kaprielian (0-6, 8.12 ERA) will make his first start in June after taking the loss in all four starts in May and face RHP Mitch Keller (7-1, 3.25). Keller has eight or more strikeouts in seven consecutive starts, the longest streak by a Pirates pitcher in the modern era (since 1901).