Baltimore (13-14) at Kansas City (15-13)

Partly Cloudy Currently: Kansas City, MO
Temp: 63° F
  • Game info: 8:10 pm EDT Tue May 3, 2011
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Another strong series from Alex Gordon(notes) helped the Kansas City Royals sweep a division rival over the weekend.

Facing the Baltimore Orioles could help Gordon stay hot at the plate.

Gordon and the Royals seek their fifth straight home win Tuesday night when they open a three-game series against the Orioles.

Kansas City (15-13) returned home from a winless six-game trip and swept Minnesota in three games over the weekend, finishing the series with a 10-3 win Sunday to improve to 12-5 at Kauffman Stadium.

The Royals outscored the Twins 25-8 and recorded at least 10 hits in all three games.

Gordon, who went hitless in the final two games of the trip following a 19-game hitting streak, bounced back with five hits over the weekend, including four for extra bases. He’s batting .388 at Kauffman Stadium, where he has 16 of his 20 RBIs and 15 of his 17 extra-base hits.

“Obviously we’re playing very well at home,” first baseman Billy Butler(notes) told the Royals’ official website. “It’s good to see, it’s good for the fans. We had a rough road trip and we had to break out of it, and we’re doing well now.”

Gordon will try to keep things going against the Orioles. He’s riding a 15-game hitting streak versus Baltimore, during which he’s hit .311.

Even with all the home success, Kansas City may have trouble if probable starter Jeff Francis(notes) (0-3, 5.03 ERA) can’t break out of his slump.

After a four-inning outing at Texas in his previous start, Francis lasted only three innings at Cleveland on Wednesday, giving up six runs and a season-high 10 hits in a 7-2 defeat.

The left-hander is 0-2 with a 4.85 ERA in two starts against the Orioles. He hasn’t faced them since 2007, while with Colorado.

The Orioles (13-14) have won five of seven, but had a three-game winning streak snapped Monday with a 6-2 loss to the Chicago White Sox in the finale of a four-game series.

Baltimore, which scored 22 runs in the first three games against the White Sox, went 0 for 10 with runners in scoring position Monday.

“We had more hits than they did but we were unable to get a hit with a runner in scoring position. It’s unfortunate, but sometimes that’s how the game goes,” said Adam Jones(notes), who had three hits.

Baltimore will try to bounce back when it hands the ball to Brad Bergesen(notes) (0-3, 4.76).

The Orioles have lost all four of Bergesen’s starts in 2011, but the right-hander is coming off his best outing. He allowed two runs in six innings of Thursday’s 6-2 loss to Boston.

Bergesen is 1-1 with a 2.61 ERA in three starts against the Royals. Gordon is 2 for 4 against him.

Kansas City held a 4-2 edge in last season’s series.

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Starting Pitchers

B. Bergesen Ari vs. J. Francis Tor
2-7 Record 6-16
5.70 ERA 4.82
61 K 91
32 BB 39
1.50 WHIP 1.44


Tuesday, May 3