Orioles 11, Royals 1

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BALTIMORE – Kris Benson allowed one run in seven innings, Ramon Hernandez and Javy Lopez both homered and drove in three runs, and the Baltimore Orioles beat the Kansas City Royals 11-1 Saturday to claim their first winning streak in May.

Miguel Tejada and Melvin Mora also homered for the Orioles, who hadn’t won two in a row since April 28-29. The victory, combined with Friday night’s win over Kansas City, assured Baltimore its first series win in eight tries.

Tejada hit a two-run homer in the fifth inning to put the Orioles up 5-1. Hernandez, Lopez and Mora connected in a six-run eighth against Chris Booker.

Hernandez started the eighth with a solo shot. Lopez, activated off the 15-day disabled list before the game, added a three-run drive and Mora homered with a man on. The last time the Orioles hit three home runs in an inning was exactly two years earlier, on May 13, 2004, at Chicago.

Benson (5-3) gave up four hits, struck out five and walked one. The right-hander was coming off a miserable performance in Boston, where he allowed nine runs in 4 1-3 innings.

On Saturday, Benson permitted only one runner past first base before Matt Stairs homered in the seventh.

Stairs and Mark Grudzielanek both had two hits, but the rest of the Royals offered little support for starter Mark Redman (0-3), who remained winless since July 24, when he beat Colorado as a member of the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Kansas City fell to 2-16 on the road and 0-8 against the AL East.

Baltimore went up 2-0 in the first inning on a two-out double by Hernandez.

Redman retired nine straight batters before the Orioles struck with two outs in fourth. Corey Patterson reached on a bunt before Lopez drew a walk. Luis Matos followed with an RBI single for a 3-0 lead.

In the fifth, Mora led off with a double before Tejada hit his 10th homer. Tejada entered the game batting .352, but was in a 4-for-35 slump before connecting.

Held to two singles over the first five innings, Kansas City finally got a runner to second base in the sixth. After Grudzielanek got an infield hit with two outs and Doug Mienkiewicz walked, Reggie Sanders grounded out.

Notes: To make room for Lopez on the 25-man roster, the Orioles designated OF Luis Terrero for assignment. … Benson is the first Baltimore starter to earn a win in nine games. He was the last one to do it, on May 2 vs. Toronto. … The Royals have homered in six straight games.

AP-ES-05-13-06 1922EDT


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