The Baltimore Orioles rallied from an early 4-0 deficit, but a pair of homers from the Kansas City Royals’ Aaron Gordon and Mike Moustakas in the 10th inning led to a 8-6 win for the Royals in Game One of the American League Championship Series on Oct. 10 at Camden Yards in Baltimore.
Gordon was a problem for the Orioles the entire game: he delivered three early RBI that helped the Royals build their initial lead. He also snagged a tough catch in left field that ended Baltimore’s chances in the third inning. But his solo home run in the 10th inning was the highlight of the game and sparked a decisive 3-run inning for K.C.
Baltimore slugger Nelson Cruz hit a double and Ryan Flaherty nailed a two-run single that helped Baltimore begin its rally in the fifth inning. The O’s tied the score in the bottom of the sixth on an infield RBI single by Alejandro De Aza.
Kansas City threatened again in the top of the ninth inning, loading the bases on three walks off of normally reliable Baltimore closer Zach Britton. But Darren O’Day enticed Royals designated hitter to ground into a key double play to end the inning.
O’Day returned to start the 10th inning, but surrendered a lead-off home run to Gordon and a walk. He was relieved by Brian Matusz, who immediately gave up a two-run homer to Moustakas.
The Orioles continued to fight in the bottom of the 10th, however, with Delmon Young delivering two-out RBI single to keep Baltimore’s hopes alive. But with runners on first and second, Baltimore right fielder Nick Markakis grounded out to end the game.
Royals starter James Shields lasted five full innings but allowed 10 hits and four earned runs; reliever Greg Holland closed out the game for K.C. in the 10th inning, giving up two hits and one run before capturing the win.
Baltimore starter Chris Tillman pitched into the fifth inning, surrendering seven hits and five runs, including four in the third inning.
Game Two is set for 4:07 p.m. Saturday in Baltimore.