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Orioles extend April fortunes into May with 11-7 win over Royals behind Ryan Mountcastle’s two homers

The Orioles’ first game after their historic April went much like their first 19 wins of the season.

Baltimore trailed 3-0 early, and it appeared as if the momentum from the club’s scorching hot April — one of the best opening months in team history — wouldn’t carry over into the first game of May.

But then Ryan Mountcastle opened the floodgates in the fourth inning with his first of two home runs, as the Orioles scored five runs in the frame en route to an 11-7 win over the host Kansas City Royals.

After scoring five in the fourth, the Orioles sent two across the plate in the fifth and three more in the sixth, and Mountcastle partook in all three crooked innings. The first baseman hit a two-run home run in the fourth, another two-run shot in the fifth and an RBI double in the sixth.

The multihomer game was the eighth of Mountcastle’s career and his second this season; the first was his nine-RBI night against the Oakland Athletics on April 11.

Cedric Mullins, Adley Rutschman, Jorge Mateo, James McCann and Ramón Urías all drove in at least one run, and starting pitcher Tyler Wells overcame a rough first inning to complete six frames and claim his second win of the season.

The Orioles (20-9) are 10-0 in series openers and have won 12 of their past 14 games as they maintain the second-best record in the American League. The triumph is their 10th in come-from-behind fashion this year.

Baltimore won six straight series to close April and is now one more win in Kansas City away from making it seven. The 19 wins through April were the most in franchise history, and the opening series against the lowly Royals (7-23) precedes a difficult May schedule that includes seven teams that are above .500.

Wells surrendered two home runs — a solo shot to leadoff hitter Bobby Witt Jr. and a two-run long ball from MJ Melendez — in the first inning as the Royals jumped out to a 3-0 advantage. The 28-year-old right-hander wouldn’t allow another hit until the sixth inning when Salvador Pérez launched a solo home run.

Wells, the Orioles’ best starting pitcher through the first month of the season, had allowed four homers in his first 29 innings, but he was able to work around the three he gave up Tuesday. The other three runs the Orioles allowed came off reliever Mike Baumann in the seventh, as the right-hander gave up an RBI double to Vinnie Pasquantino and a two-run home run to Pérez.

Left-handed reliever Cionel Pérez got the final out of the seventh, and right-handers Bryan Baker and Yennier Cano each pitched scoreless innings to end the game. Cano allowed an infield single to open the ninth, ending his 0-for-32 hitless streak to begin the season.

Wells (2-1) has pitched into the sixth in all five of his starts this season and has yet to allow more than four runs in any outing. He scattered three hits and three walks while striking out four in his six innings of four-run ball.

Wells was heavily aided by his defense, as third baseman Gunnar Henderson, Mountcastle and Mullins all made web gems to steal hits from the Royals.

With the way Kansas City left-hander Ryan Yarbrough was pitched, it seemed as if the three runs were all the Royals were going to need. The former Tampa Bay Ray continued his success against Baltimore and retired the first 10 batters in order. He struck out the first five he faced, an odd sight considering Yarbrough had only sat down seven in his first 17 innings this year.

Rutschman, who went 4-for-5 with two doubles, broke up the nascent perfect game with a double, the Orioles’ first of 15 hits. Mountcastle then put the quarter in the merry-go-round with a home run to left field that he tattooed 112.2 mph — his hardest batted ball since September 2021 and the fourth-fastest exit velo of his career.

Six straight Orioles then reached base, as McCann, who recorded his first three-hit game as an Oriole, singled home a run and Mullins went the other way for a two-run single. Henderson, who reached base via walk for the first of three times Tuesday, displayed his slick sliding skills to evade the tag at the plate. Mullins is 12-for-26 with runners in scoring position and ranks second on the team with 23 RBIs.

Mountcastle’s second home run traveled 433 feet and put the Orioles up 7-3. Rutschman then doubled home Mullins in the sixth, Mountcastle roped a two-bagger to score Rutschman and Mateo grounded out to bring home Mountcastle. The Orioles’ final run came on an RBI single from Urías to score Santander, who singled on the 16th pitch of his at-bat off Royals reliever Taylor Clarke.

This story will be updated.

Orioles at Royals

Wednesday, 7:40 p.m.

TV: MASN2

Radio: 97.9 FM, 101.5 FM, 1090 AM

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Source: Berkshire mont

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