KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Tack the Kansas City Royals onto the list of teams that are sick of seeing Adam Jones.
The Orioles’ slugger followed up his eventual winning homer in the 15th inning the previous night with a two-run shot on Thursday, helping Baltimore climb back from a three-run deficit to beat the Royals 5-3 and win their seventh straight road game.
The Orioles also improved to 12-1 when Jones goes deep, something he’s done each of the last three games. He has 13 homers on the year, a mark he didn’t reach until June 25 last season.
“He’s hot right now. He’s really hot,” said J.J. Hardy, whose two-run single in the seventh inning provided the go-ahead runs. “He’s been swinging the bat impressively.”
Jones preferred to deflect the attention from his hot start to his teammates.
“We’re just chipping away,” said Jones, who now has a nine-game hitting streak. “You’re down 3-0, it’s easy to give away at-bats. We’re not giving anything away right now.”
Brian Matusz (3-4) won for the third time in four starts after enduring a career-worst 12-decision losing streak. He allowed three runs on seven hits and a walk in six innings.
Relievers Luis Ayala and Pedro Strop made it through two innings unscathed, and Jim Johnson worked the ninth for his 14th save. He’s converted 22 straight since Aug. 14, 2011.
Luke Hochevar (3-4) yielded a two-run homer by Jones in the fourth. But the right-hander ran into trouble in the seventh, allowing back-to-back singles by Wilson Betemit and Chris Davis, the start of a three-run inning for the Orioles.
Hochevar was pulled after Davis’ base hit, which center fielder Jarrod Dyson grossly misplayed. The ball bounced in front of him and went to the wall, allowing Betemit to score.
Reliever Aaron Crow came into the game and got two quick outs, but then walked No. 9 hitter Luis Exposito and leadoff hitter Xavier Avery to load the bases. Hardy followed with a two-run single, helping extend the Orioles’ longest road winning streak since 1999.
“I just didn’t get the job done,” Crow said. “I need to go out and attack those guys, and if they beat you, so be it. I just can’t give guys free bases and it ended up hurting me today.”