BALTIMORE -- Mike Wright made a statement in his second chance at the rotation, firing seven innings and not giving up an earned run to back yet another comeback effort from the American East-leading Orioles in a 4-1 win over the Royals on Monday night at Camden Yards.
"He came out here with a vengeance," Orioles shortstop Manny Machado, who hit one of three O's home runs, said of Wright. "Nobody wants to get sent down [to the Minors]. He had something to prove, that he wanted to be up here and wanted to stay here. The next start, he has to come out and do the same thing. We know what he's capable of. He just needs to bring it out every day, every pitch, every outing. He knows what he needs to do. He's just got to go out there and do it."
The Royals dropped their fifth straight to match a season-high losing streak as they continue to slip in the AL Central.
"You couldn't have been any hotter than we were five days ago," Royals manager Ned Yost said. "Now it's hard to be much colder."
The Royals have scored three runs in the past four games.
"The offense has gone silent," Yost said. "Quiet period."
Scoreless after six innings, Cheslor Cuthbert was hit in the elbow by second baseman Jonathan Schoop's errant throw in the seventh inning, with the ball bouncing up and allowing Paulo Orlando to run home for a 1-0 Royals lead. It also snapped a 17-inning scoreless streak for Kansas City.
Baltimore, winners of five in the past six games it has trailed, didn't wait long to tie it up. Mark Trumbo regained sole possession of the Major League lead in homers, with his 19th, off Royals starter Danny Duffy to start the bottom of the seventh.
One out later, Matt Wieters -- Sunday's hero -- went deep to center to chase Duffy from the game despite only being at 80 pitches. Duffy gave up five hits and a hit batsmen, striking out nine to match his career high in his first loss of the season.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED The Wright Stuff: Removed from the rotation and demoted last week, Wright got the callup and quick turnaround -- given reliever Darren O'Day's injury -- and was tabbed for the spot start. And he delivered, matching a season high in innings and not allowing any earned runs for the first time in 10 starts. Wright, who entered the game with a 5.88 ERA, gave a huge lift to a struggling rotation. More >
"It's good that I got another opportunity, like [manager Buck Showalter] said a do-over," Wright said. "You got to take the situation, take your opportunities and run with them."
Whatever it takes: The Royals' slumping offense will take any type of run at this point, and they finally got one in the seventh when Jarrod Dyson hit a one-out grounder to short that resulted in a force at second. Schoop tried to check his throw to first, seeing Dyson had the double play beat. But Schoop wound up spiking the throw right into Cuthbert's right elbow and allowed Orlando to score from second. Cuthbert suffered a contusion on the elbow. More >
"If I can throw [Tuesday], I can play," Cuthbert said.
Comeback Kids: Baltimore continued to make magic in the later innings, scoring four unanswered runs, three via homers, to maintain their hold atop the AL East. Trumbo hit his fourth homer of the homestand, while Wieters continued to come up clutch with his fifth blast of the year.
Duffy dealing: Duffy navigated out of trouble in the third inning when a single, a bunt single and a sacrifice bunt put runners on second and third with one out. But Duffy stepped up and struck out Joey Rickard and Machado to end the threat. More >
"That was big," Duffy said. "I knew with the stuff I had today, I had a really good chance of getting out of that. My changeup was phenomenal, probably the best I've had. I didn't even throw a slider until the seventh ... that third inning is something I had confidence I could do."
"There's a lot of guys who make a really good living feasting off fourth and fifth starters, and guys who don't pitch at the end of the game that you are ahead in. But that hasn't been the case with our guys, they've been facing some of the best relievers in baseball. It's been impressive to do. It's not easy. Over the course of the season, if you're not getting runs, off of those guys you are not going to like the results. So, we've been fortunate. It's not something you like to depend on, getting runs off those guys … their bullpen is and has been good for a long time." -- Showalter, whose team has outscored opponents 54-25 in the seventh inning this season
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Showalter moved into sole possession of 29th on the all-time managerial wins list with 1,373, passing Davey Johnson.
Cuthbert was diagnosed with an elbow contusion and is listed as day to day. Baltimore catcher Caleb Joseph (testicular injury suffered on May 30) will not be able to catch for four weeks, meaning he will not come off the disabled list after 15 days.
WHAT'S NEXT Royals: Right-hander Yordano Ventura (4-3, 4.82 ERA) takes the mound for the Royals in the middle game of the series on Tuesday at 6:05 p.m. CT. Ventura beat the O's, 6-1, on April 24 with seven innings of one-run ball.
Orioles: Right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez (2-6, 6.59) will get the ball on Tuesday at 7:05 p.m. ET. The O's are hoping the veteran can build off his last outing. Jimenez took a no-hitter into the fifth before it all fell apart in the sixth, as he couldn't record an out.