Westburg delivers tiebreaking homer in 9th to lift Orioles past Royals 6-4

Mon, Apr 1, 2024
MLB News (AP)

Westburg delivers tiebreaking homer in 9th to lift Orioles past Royals 6-4

BALTIMORE (AP) - Jordan Westburg hit a tiebreaking, two-run homer in the bottom of the ninth inning to carry the Baltimore Orioles past the Kansas City Royals 6-4 on Monday night.

Westburg's opposite-field drive to right came on an 0-2 pitch from Nick Anderson (0-1) after the Royals rallied to tie the game in the top of the inning.

Ryan Mountcastle homered and drove in three runs for the Orioles.

Bobby Witt Jr. and Salvador Perez homered for the Royals, the second straight game in which each went deep.

With the score tied at 3 in the eighth, singles by Gunnar Henderson and Adley Rutschman put runners at the corners with two outs for Mountcastle, who reached on an RBI infield single when first baseman Nick Loftin couldn't handle the throw from the shortstop Witt.

That gave closer Craig Kimbrel (1-0) a chance to seal the victory in his Baltimore debut. But Kyle Isbel singled, and pinch-runner Dairon Blanco stole second and third before scoring on a fly ball by Maikel Garcia.

Westburg delivered in the bottom half. He leaped in joy after rounding first base and was drenched in water after arriving at the plate.

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Making his Kansas City debut after signing a two-year, $32 million contract in December, Michael Wacha gave up three runs in five innings. The only three hits he allowed came in succession in the fourth, when Baltimore bounced back from a 3-0 deficit to pull even.

Orioles starter Dean Kremer allowed three runs and three hits in 5 1/3 innings.

Witt hit a solo shot in the third and Perez added a two-run drive to put the Royals up 3-0.

Rutschman doubled leading off the Baltimore fourth, Anthony Santander followed with an RBI single and Mountcastle went deep.

FIELDING GEMS

The Orioles fumbled two grounders for errors in the first inning, but a pair of superb fielding plays kept the game tied in the seventh. After Nelson Velazquez hit a one-out double, Mountcastle dived to snare a grounder past first base and beat Isbel to the bag. Henderson then charged to pick up a short-hop grounder to shortstop and threw out speedy Maikel Garcia.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Orioles: LHP John Means (elbow) began his rehabilitation assignment by yielding two homers and seven runs in one-plus innings for Triple-A Norfolk on Sunday. "The numbers didn't show great success but he felt good physically," Orioles manager Brandon Hyde said Monday. "That's what matters in any rehab, for sure."

Royals: INF Michael Massey (lower back strain) is "progressing well" and could begin a rehab assignment "in the next few days," manager Matt Quatraro said.

UP NEXT

There's rain the forecast Tuesday night, when Orioles starter Cole Irvin is scheduled to face the Royals and Alec Marsh, who lost his first eight decisions as a rookie last year before finishing 3-9.

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