The Kansas City Royals keep hitting big home runs. That led to Friday’s win vs. Orioles

The Kansas City Royals continued their hot streak at Kauffman Stadium. On Friday, the Royals earned their ninth home victory on the young season with a win against the Baltimore Orioles.

The Royals recorded nine hits in a 9-4 win over the Orioles.

In the sixth inning, KC produced a five-run outburst and improved to 13-7.

Vinnie Pasquantino and MJ Melendez each homered in key situations for KC.

Pasquantino gave the Royals an early 1-0 lead. He belted his fourth home run of the season, adding to his recent hot stretch. Later, Melendez provided three insurance runs. His three-run homer in the seventh inning helped seal the Royals’ victory.

It was enough run support for Royals starter Alec Marsh. The second-year veteran tossed 5 2/3 shutout innings. He allowed three hits and struck out six batters en route to his third win of the season.

Marsh relied on his four-seam fastball throughout the game. The pitch registered 17 swings and seven whiffs. He balanced the heater primarily with his curveball and changeup. Both pitches generated a combined 20 swings.

The Orioles scored all four runs with one swing. Adley Rutschman hit his first career grand slam off Royals reliever Will Smith in the top of the seventh inning. Smith was charged with four runs and four hits in his one-inning outing.

Orioles starter Dean Kremer took the loss. He allowed three earned runs despite not allowing a hit until the fourth inning.

Baltimore dropped to 12-7 on the season. KC will look to win the series with a victory on Saturday night.

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Here are more notables from Friday’s game:

Vinnie Pasquantino blasts 4th home run

Pasquantino sent a jolt through Kauffman Stadium in the fourth inning. He drilled a solo home run off Kremer that gave the Royals a 1-0 lead.

Kremer left a 84-mph splitter over the plate. Pasquantino took advantage and sent the baseball over the right-field wall. The home run traveled 397 feet and registered a 109.0-mph exit velocity, per Baseball Savant.

Pasquantino has now homered in three of his last five games. In that span, he has recorded six hits in 15 at-bats.

The Royals have hit 25 home runs this season. They rank fourth among Major League Baseball teams this season.

Not so fast: Salvy throws out baserunner at 3rd base

Marsh got a huge assist from Royals captain Salvador Perez. In the first inning, the Orioles posed an early threat with runners in scoring position.

Orioles star Gunnar Henderson was hit by a pitch to begin the game. Next, Adley Rutschman singled in the next at-bat.

Marsh was suddenly in a tough spot. He induced Ryan O’Hearn to ground out as both runner’s moved up 90 feet on the basepaths.

However, Perez picked up his teammate. He fired down to third base and threw out Henderson when Henderson wandered too far away from the base. Royals third baseman Maikel Garcia applied the tag as Henderson was called out.

The Orioles challenged the on-field call. An official review upheld the tag play as Henderson was out.

Later, Marsh retired Anthony Santander to end the inning. The game remained scoreless as the Orioles failed to cash an early scoring chance.

What’s next on KC Royals’ schedule

The Royals continue their weekend series against the Orioles.

Cole Ragans is set to start in Saturday’s star-studded rematch against Corbin Burnes. Both aces dueled in Baltimore on April 3. Ragans allowed one hit and registered seven strikeouts in 6 1/3 scoreless innings during the matchup.

First pitch Saturday is set for 6:10 p.m.