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American League Preview from The Sports Network
Wednesday, May 16th (All times Eastern)
Baltimore Orioles (23-14) at Kansas City Royals (15-20), 8:10 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Baltimore - Tommy Hunter (2-2, 5.14) Kansas City - Felipe Paulino (1-1, 3.09)
(Sports Network) - The Kansas City Royals look to extend their season high winning streak to five games when they open a two-game series versus the Baltimore Orioles at Kauffman Stadium.
The Royals just swept the mighty Texas Rangers in two games down in Arlington and closed the series with Tuesday's 7-4 win. Mike Moustakas homered, while Brayan Pena and Billy Butler added two RBI apiece for the Royals, who went 4-1 on a five-game road trip.
Vin Mazzaro earned his first win of the season and allowed three runs and seven hits in five innings.
"These guys are the best offensive team in the American League. ... To come in here and win two games for us is big," Royals manager Ned Yost said.
Felipe Paulino will make his third start for the Royals tonight and he is 1-1 with a 3.09 ERA in two starts. After tossing six scoreless innings over the New York Yankees on May 5, Paulino was banged around in Friday's 5-0 loss at the Chicago White Sox.
Paulino allowed four runs and seven hits in 5 2/3 innings and struck out six batters for a second straight start. The right-hander has never faced Baltimore in his career.
Meanwhile, the Orioles will commence a five-game road trip tonight against the Royals and Nationals, and sit tied with Tampa Bay for the top spot in the American League East standings.
Baltimore ended a brief two-game slide with Tuesday's 5-2 win over the New York Yankees, as Adam Jones homered and J.J. Hardy finished 2-for-4 with two runs batted in for the Orioles, who went 4-5 on a nine-game homestand and handed Yankees lefty CC Sabathia his first loss of the season.
Wei-Yin Chen pitched seven strong innings and allowed four hits and two runs, while walking two and fanning four. Chen is 4-0 on the season. Orioles reliever Jim Johnson earned his 12th save of the season.
"Anytime you're facing a guy like [CC] Sabathia you have to get a well-pitched game from your starter to be in the ball game," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "His (Chen's) pitch count was way down early and we strung together some good at-bats."
Tommy Hunter will handle pitching duties for the Orioles tonight and he is 2-2 with a 5.14 ERA in seven starts. He lost his most recent outing, a 7-3 loss to Texas, and was reached for four runs and five hits in six innings. Hunter struck out seven batters and walked one for a third consecutive start.
Hunter, a right-hander, is 1-0 with a 4.05 ERA in two career games (1 start) against the Royals.
The Orioles won five of nine matchups against Kansas City in 2011, but went 2-4 at Kauffman Stadium.
05/16 11:00:07 ET
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