Zach Britton hadn’t allowed an earned run in his last 19 2/3 innings until Kansas City’s Jeff Francoeur lined an RBI single into left field with one out in the top of the first inning.
Alex Gordon reached on a bunt single and Melky Cabrera lined a single up the middle to put Britton in immediate trouble. Eric Hosmer ran the count full before striking out on a changeup - yes, a 3-2 changeup from Britton - but Francoeur singled on the next pitch.
Billy Butler grounded into a 5-4-3 double play to bail out Britton, with first baseman Brandon Snyder stretching to his right to field Robert Andino’s one-hopper.
Snyder isn’t known for his glove, but that was an impressive play.
The Orioles observed a moment of silence before the game in memory of those who lost their lives in the tornado in Joplin, Mo.
Authorities say the death toll has risen to 122, and more than 750 people were injured. The tornado was the highest-rated EF5, with winds greater than 200 mph.
Update: Alex Gordon’s home run in the third inning, a 408-foot shot with the count full and one out, increased the Royals’ lead to 2-0.
The Orioles have put a runner on second base in two of the first three innings without scoring.