BALTIMORE - Adam Jones was greeted by huge cheers every time he came to the plate. They grew louder when he singled in to drive in a run in the fifth inning.
By then, the Baltimore Orioles' victory looked in hand, and Jones' contract extension was nearly done. The Orioles' 8-2 victory over the Kansas City Royals in front of lively crowd of 28,954 on Friday night at Oriole Park was dessert for the hungry fans. Nearly 11,000 fans bought tickets at the ballpark, a stadium record.
Jones and the Orioles are near a deal for a contract reported by CBSsports.com as six years, $85.5 million.
Team executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette said he was "encouraged" by the talks.
"Hopefully, we can work something out in the short term," Duquette said. "We've had some productive discussions and hopefully it will lead to a long-term deal."
"I wish I could tell you more," Jones said Friday afternoon. "There's nothing to tell you."
He did allow he wanted to stay in Baltimore. "It'd be cool," he said. "It's an exciting thing, a humbling thing, the thought of it, [but] it's not complete."
The Orioles scored five runs in the fifth to knock Bruce Chen (3-5) out. Ten batters came to the plate, the first five reached. J.J. Hardy knocked in two runs with a double. Nick Markakis followed with an RBI double. Jones singled to drive in another. After Jones stole second and advanced to third on shortstop Alcides Escobar's error, Chris Davis' single scored him.
Xavier Avery and Robert Andino were both picked off first by Chen, but each was safe sliding into second.
"That was by design," manager Buck Showalter joked. "Some people nonchalantly say, 'I got picked off,' and just kind of slide in there. Both of them beat it. Robert made a great slide there."
Jones' sacrifice fly in the first inning accounted for Baltimore's first run.
Davis hit a long two-run home run to right field in the seventh to make it 8-0. It was his seventh of the season.
Jason Hammel (6-1) pitched six scoreless innings for the win. He allowed five hits, walked one and struck out five. Stu Pomeranz allowed a two-run home run to Jeff Francoeur in the eighth.
In his last two starts, hampered by a sore right knee, Hammel was limited to five and 5 1-3 innings. After Hardy made a great, leaping catch to end the fifth with two runners on base, Hammel breezed through the sixth.
"I was aware of the knee in the fifth inning," Hammel said. "I knew it was there, maybe a little bothersome. But then I got through the sixth with the same feeling. So it didn't get any worse. Huge, huge step there."
The Orioles' previous 10 wins were by three runs or fewer.
NOTES: The Orioles recalled catcher Ronny Paulino and Pomeranz from Triple-A Norfolk. They optioned catcher Luis Exposito to the Tides and designated third baseman Bill Hall for assignment. Paulino, was sent down to Norfolk on May 7. He batted .300 in nine games with the Orioles, and hit .283 at Norfolk. Pomeranz didn't allow a run in 10 appearances at Norfolk and Bowie nor did he give up a run in four innings with the Orioles earlier this month.
Hall was 2-for-7 in six games with a home run. Showalter said that he hoped that Hall would rejoin Norfolk if he wasn't claimed by another major league club. Exposito was just 1-for-17 (.057) in eight games.
Nolan Reimold had a second epidural injection for his herniated disc.
Mark Reynolds and Endy Chavez, who are both on the 15-day disabled list with oblique strains, played in extended spring training. They're scheduled to play at Bowie this weekend. They'll be joined on Saturday by Zach Britton, who'll make his first start of the season.
Brian Roberts isn't scheduled to play on Saturday. He was 0-for-1 on Friday with a sacrifice fly. In three games for Bowie, Roberts is 0-for-3 with two walks.
Dylan Bundy is scheduled to make his first start for Frederick on Saturday. Game time is 6:05 p.m. at Harry Grove Stadium.
Jones extended his hitting streak to a career-high 16 games.