Moustakas has team-record 9 RBIs as Royals beat Orioles 14-6
BALTIMORE (AP) The Kansas City Royals kept getting on base in front of Mike Moustakas, and he repeatedly brought them home.
And that, quite simply, is how Moustakas amassed a franchise-record nine RBIs in a 14-6 rout of the Baltimore Orioles on Saturday.
Moustakas hit a two-run single in the sixth inning, his second career grand slam in the seventh and capped the unprecedented performance with a three-run homer in the ninth.
''It's pretty special,'' Moustakas said. ''I was just able to get good pitches, and I didn't miss them today.''
The previous team record for RBIs in a game was seven, by Billy Butler against Philadelphia on April 7, 2013.
''The guys got on base today, gave me opportunities to drive in some runs,'' Moustakas said. ''I was able to capitalize on that.''
The start was delayed by rain for 3 hours, 2 minutes, and the game lasted 3:40. By the time it was over, it was difficult for Royals manager Ned Yost to recall all that Moustakas accomplished.
''He sure had a great one today,'' Yost said. ''A grand slam, a three-run homer. I don't know what else he did, that game was so doggone long. He had nine RBIs? A 4-hour game, I forgot about all of that.''
Salvador Perez had two hits and three RBIs for the AL Central leaders, who won for only the second time in eight games.
''It was a big win. You can't lose six out of seven like we had,'' Yost said. ''The good thing about it is their disposition, their focus, their intensity hasn't changed through this.''
Yordano Ventura (11-8) allowed four runs and eight hits in 5 2-3 innings for Kansas City. The right-hander is 7-1 in his last 10 starts, including a pair of wins over Baltimore.
Adam Jones and Nolan Reimold homered for the Orioles, whose modest three-game winning streak ended. Baltimore has 21 games left to close a significant gap in the hunt for the second AL wild card.
Baltimore was betrayed by a bullpen that yielded 10 runs and 10 hits over the final 3 2-3 innings. The relievers weren't sharp on Friday night, either, when the Orioles rallied to win 14-8.
''We didn't pitch well out of the `pen, obviously,'' manager Buck Showalter said. ''A couple of games, I'm being nice when I say they weren't crisp. Both of them.''
Kansas City trailed 4-1 before batting around in a five-run sixth against three pitchers. After Eric Hosmer chased starter Chris Tillman with a run-scoring single, Moustakas drove in a pair of runs with a single off Brian Matusz (1-4). Perez greeted Chaz Roe with an opposite-field, two-run single to right.
The Royals pulled away with a five-run seventh. The big blow was delivered by Moustakas, who drove an 0-2 pitch over the right-field wall after an intentional walk to Kendrys Morales filled the bases.
After Reimold got Baltimore to 11-6 with a two-run drive in the eighth, Moustakas connected off Steve Johnson in the ninth.
It was the fourth career multihomer game for Moustakas, who turned 27 on Friday night.
''What did he have, seven RBIs? Nine?'' Baltimore's J.J. Hardy said. ''That's a pretty good month - or week. What did we score? Not enough.''
Baltimore used a sacrifice fly by Gerardo Parra and a three-run shot by Jones to build a 4-1 lead after three innings.
Royals: Reliever Wade Davis returned to action after being rested with shoulder soreness.
Orioles: C Matt Wieters was back in the starting lineup after missing three games with a sore left wrist. ... The Orioles hope RHP Miguel Gonzalez (right shoulder tendinitis) can come off the DL before the season ends. ''Best scenario, he gets some starts,'' Showalter said. ''It would certainly help his frame of mind.''
Royals: RHP Johnny Cueto attempts to snap a four-game losing streak in the series finale Sunday night. He's 2-5 with a 4.86 ERA in eight starts with Kansas City.
Orioles: Wei-Yin Chen beat the Royals on Aug. 26 and tries for an encore. The Taiwanese left-hander is 4-1 in his last nine starts.