Posted May 24, 2012 on
AP on Fox
The Baltimore Orioles were happy to have a day off after a grueling stretch, but an off day probably isn't good news for the Kansas City Royals.
The Orioles have won all four games after not playing the day before heading into Friday night's opener of a three-game home set against a Royals team that has struggled following time off.
Baltimore (28-17) dropped two of three to Boston this week, capped by Wednesday's 6-5 defeat. That finished a 12-8, 20-day stretch for the Orioles, who had one day off in that span due to a postponement against Texas.
"I'm real proud of the effort and the way these guys have gotten after it for these 20 games," manager Buck Showalter said. "We knew looking at the schedule it was going to be a real challenge for us physically, mentally and emotionally."
The Orioles won the first game of a doubleheader against the Rangers on May 10 following the rainout to improve to 4-0 coming off a day off, not counting another win on opening day.
Kansas City (17-26) has lost all five times after not playing the day before, including two contests after postponements and not including an opening day defeat. The Royals, who've lost four straight in Baltimore, weren't well rested when they were swept in a two-game home set by the Orioles from May 16-17, with the opener going 15 innings.
Adam Jones homered twice in that series, including the game-winner in the 15th. Jones is batting .355 during a career-best 15-game hitting streak in which he has six homers and 12 RBIs.
Baltimore leads the majors with 69 homers and is 13-1 when Jones goes deep.
Nick Johnson had his first multihomer game in nearly six years Wednesday. Johnson is 13 for 37 (.351) with four homers and 10 RBIs this month after his 0-for-26 April.
Kansas City, meanwhile, has 33 homers for the AL's second-lowest total. The Royals, however, had their most longballs in a three-game set this season with five as they lost two of three to the Yankees this week.
Jeff Francoeur had two homers while slumping Eric Hosmer went 5 for 11 in the Bronx.
Jason Hammel (5-1, 3.12 ERA) will start Friday for Baltimore. He posted a 2.09 ERA in his first six outings, but knee pain has been a factor in his 6.97 mark over his last two.
The right-hander surrendered four runs over 5 1-3 innings Saturday but got credit for a 6-5 win at Washington.
"Obviously, I want to be getting deeper into ballgames, but the knee is just not cooperating right now," Hammel told the Orioles' official website.
Hammel is 0-2 with a 7.63 ERA in three career starts against the Royals.
Kansas City's Bruce Chen (3-4, 4.17) is headed in the opposite direction, going 3-0 with a 2.75 ERA in his last three starts after beginning 0-4 with a 4.98 ERA. The left-hander gave up two runs over 6 1-3 innings Saturday in a 7-3 victory over Arizona.
Chen is 2-1 with a 3.74 ERA in four starts against the team he pitched for from 2004-06. Jones is 5 for 11 against him with a homer.
The Orioles lead the majors with a 7-3 record against southpaw starters.
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
I am not sure what any of this means but I was amused watching Adam Jones and Robert Andino vandalize various structures (and people) in NYC.Your browser does not support iframes.
The Baltimore Orioles and the agent for center fielder Adam Jones are discussing an extension for the one-time All-Star, whose contract expires after this season.
Jones confirmed Friday that his representative, Nez Balelo, was in Baltimore. Jones also said he's taken a physical, a prerequisite to a contract extension.
But he could not confirm an agreement.
The Orioles, building on their early-season momentum have signed center fielder Adam Jones to a club-record contract extension.
Jones signed a six-year, $85.5 million contract with the Orioles on Sunday, ensuring that the 26-year-old center fielder will stay with the team through 2018.
The deal is well north of the two largest deals in team history -- Miguel Tejada's six-year...
According to MASNSports.com's Steve Melewski, the Orioles are implementing six-man rotations in their farm system from AA down:The Orioles seem to really like the fact that their starters can get two bullpen or side sessions between starts in a six-man and feel that is a good way right now for some of their young hurlers to get their work in and make improvements to their game...
Orioles fans have been clamoring for it all season, and the team seems to have finally locked up Adam Jones with a contract extension. I was a little worried that they would feel they "had" to keep Jones, and end up giving him a Matt Kemp type deal (8 years, $160 M), but was looking at 6 years, $80-90 M myself. Actual contract; 6 years, $85 M. Nicely done, Orioles...
The Baltimore Orioles lost the finale of their three-game series with the Red Sox Wednesday afternoon, but many with the Baltimore franchise were thinking about a certain player and not the 6-5 defeat. Brian Roberts was scheduled to begin his rehab assignment about 40 minutes down the road with Double-A Bowie Wednesday night. Roberts has been out for just over a year due to problems...
MLB MVP watch
We’re more than a quarter of the way through the 2012 Major League Baseball season, and it’s time for the first MVP watch. There was two first-time winners last season: Justin Verlander, who took the A.L. MVP and Cy Young award, and Ryan Braun. Both the MVPs led their teams to the Championship Series of their respective leagues. Unlike the Cy Young award which...
A new post on the Orioles Buzz blog on MASNSports.com about how Andy MacPhail's trades have brought players into the Oriole system who are big contributors to this winning team.Enjoy.
This is a piece I wrote for MASN Sports this morning. I've got a feeling this is going to be a hot topic for quite a while.
As we all know, veteran Orioles second baseman Brian Roberts returned to competitive baseball last night as he played three innings for the Double-A Bowie Baysox last night.
Roberts is playing for the Baysox as part of a rehabilitation assignment...
BALTIMORE (AP) -- Jason Hammel pitched six shutout innings, Chris Davis homered and drove in three runs, and the Baltimore Orioles cruised past the Kansas City Royals 8-2 on Friday night.
Adam Jones and J.J. Hardy had two RBIs apiece for the Orioles, now 28-1 when hitting a home run. Davis hit Baltimore's league-leading 70th homer of the season in the seventh inning with a man...
The Orioles are celebrating Field Trip Day on Wednesday during the Red Sox game, but hopefully the kids aren't paying attention too closely to the game. Because if they are, they're learning some pretty terrible fundamentals on how to run the bases. Both teams have made mistakes in this one, from getting thrown out at third to make the last out of an inning to not runnning...
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Roy Oswalt is getting closer to signing a contract, and while his reported preference is to pitch for one of the Rangers, Cardinals or Braves, the surprising first-place Orioles are quickly emerging as a dark horse candidate for his services. The Orioles may have lost a recent waiver claim to the Rangers based on their better record — which is still strange to type — but an aggressive...
The Baltimore Orioles and Adam Jones are on the verge of agreeing to a contract extension according to sources close to Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.
Jones is hitting .311/.357/.601 with 14 HR's, 29 RBI's and a 161 OPS+ in 183 AB's for the Orioles this season. He ranks third in the Majors in WAR behind Josh Hamilton and David Wright with 2.8. His UZR...