The rain has picked up in intensity tonight at Camden Yards.
So has the scoring.
The Orioles battled back from a 5-1 deficit to tie Game 1 of the American League Championship Series 5-5 as we head to the top of the seventh inning.
The Royals are known for their bullpen and defense, but they were let down.
Rookie Brandon Finnegan, the 17th overall pick in the 2014 First-Year Player Draft out of TCU, didn’t retire any of the three batters he faced after replacing starter James Shields in the bottom of the sixth. Jonathan Schoop drew a rare walk and Nick Markakis and Alejandro De Aza followed with singles.
Markakis is 3-for-4 tonight.
De Aza reached on an infield hit, his looper dropping behind the mound. Schoop, who should have been out at third base earlier in the inning, raced home with the tying run.
Schoop appeared to be picked off second base, but shortstop Alcides Escobar’s throw hit Schoop on the back. Markakis advanced to second base and the Orioles were credited with a double steal on the play.
Third baseman Mike Moustakas was charged with an error after fielding Adam Jones’ grounder, stepping on the bag and throwing wildly to first. However, Nelson Cruz grounded into a double play to end the rally.
Royals manager Ned Yost will be second-guessed for staying with Shields too long in the fifth and bringing in Finnegan in the sixth. It comes with the territory.
I wondered whether manager Buck Showalter would send up Delmon Young to bat for De Aza with a left-hander on the mound. Too soon, I suppose.
The grounds crew hasn’t moved behind the tarp, which is always a good sign.
Update: Wade Davis struck out the side in the bottom of the ninth and we’re headed to extra innings.
The last 11 Orioles have been retired with six strikeouts.
Zach Britton walked the bases loaded with no outs in the top of the ninth. He hadn’t walked more than one batter in any game this season.
Eric Hosmer grounded into a force at home, with catcher Nick Hundley somehow managing to dig Steve Pearce’s throw out of the dirt while keeping his foot on the plate.
Darren O’Day replaced Britton, and Billy Butler grounded into a 6-4-3 double play. Masterful escape act.
Update II: Alex Gordon homered off O’Day leading off the 10th to give Kansas City a 6-5 lead. O’Day slammed the rosin bag to the ground as Gordon circled the bases.
The Orioles were 14-6 in extra innings during the regular season. The Royals were 5-7, but they’re 3-0 in the playoffs.
Update III: Brian Matusz replaced O’Day and Mike Moustakas hit a two-run homer to extend the lead to 8-5.
The Royals are hitting home runs tonight and the Orioles executed a double steal. Go figure.
Update IV: The Orioles lose to the Royals 8-6 in 10 innings.
Greg Holland picked up the save after Ryan Flaherty’s two-out single, Jimmy Paredes’ walk and Delmon Young’s RBI single to center field.
The Royals take a 1-0 lead in the series. Game 2 is scheduled for Saturday at 4:07 p.m.