The Orioles welcomed back one of their banged-up veterans to the starting lineup Friday, while another was out because of a lingering injury. Center fielder Adam Jones, who left Monday's game in the eighth inning with a sore right shoulder and hadn't played since, was in his customary third spot in the lineup Friday. Catcher Matt Wieters, who had been dealing with a sore left wrist for a week but started Tuesday, was out of the lineup with lingering wrist soreness.
The Kansas City Royals, much like the Orioles, have long pumped the potential in their minor league system as the major league team struggled. And a lot of those prospects were biding their time in Wilmington, Del., home of the High-A Blue Rocks.
The power of the Kansas City Royals' bullpen against the versatility of the Orioles' should make for an American League Championship Series that could be decided early in each game since the relievers don't often break.
Despite two rain delays and an uneven but effective performance by starter Chris Tillman, the Orioles had a chance against the Boston Red Sox on Tuesday night. But they turned in their weakest offensive performance of the season in a 1-0 loss.
Royals left fielder Alex Gordon hit two three-run homers, including one off Orioles right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez in the fifth inning, to give Kansas City an 8-6 victory and a split in the four-game series.
It took 10 innings and a couple gifts from the Kansas City Royals, but the Orioles pulled out a 3-2 victory Saturday. They scored their winning run on a hit batsman, two pitcher¿s errors after bunts and then a clutch single by Nick Markakis.