KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Kendrys Morales hit a solo homer, Mike Moustakas and Eric Hosmer also drove in runs and the Kansas City Royals leaned on their bullpen to beat the Baltimore Orioles 3-2 on Tuesday night.
Danny Duffy (7-6) dodged trouble for most of 5 2-3 innings, allowing two runs on five hits and two walks. The left-hander struck out five in a start that began in crisp efficiency and ended with the Orioles threatening to pull ahead in the sixth inning.
Luke Hochevar calmed things down with an inning of relief, though. Kelvin Herrera had no trouble with the rest of the seventh and eighth, and Wade Davis pitched a perfect ninth in place of closer Greg Holland to earn his 12th save.
Miguel Gonzalez (9-10) allowed all three runs on six hits and three walks in 4 1-3 innings, the latest in a string of lousy starts for Baltimore. Gonzalez is 0-4 in his last six tries.
Leadoff hitter Manny Machado went 0 for 5 with three strikeouts, his last ending the game.
The Orioles (62-63) have lost a season-high six straight, falling below .500 for the first time since they were 48-49 on July 26. The calamitous slump has also damaged their playoff hopes -- they began the night 2 1/2 games back of Texas for the final AL wild-card spot.
Meanwhile, the Royals won their fourth straight overall. They also improved to 44-20 at home this season, highlighted by their current 12-2 stretch.
The Royals never trailed after Morales sent a 3-2 pitch into the fountains in right field in the second inning. Hosmer added an RBI groundout in the third, and Moustakas delivered yet another two-out single by the league's best-hitting team in such situations to score another run.
The Orioles got two runs back in the fourth when Matt Wieters drew a two-out walk and Steve Pearce, Jonathan Schoop and Caleb Joseph strung together a trio of singles. But Duffy managed to get recently called up Paul Janish to ground out to end the threat.
Duffy was in trouble again in the sixth, but Hochevar got Joseph to fly out to deep right field to leave runners on second and third and preserve the 3-2 lead.
It was up to one of the best bullpens in the majors to take care of the rest.
Orioles: C Steve Clevenger went on the three-day paternity list to attend the birth of his daughter. Peyton Lee was born Tuesday afternoon.
Royals: Manager Ned Yost said there is still no timetable for OF Alex Gordon to return from his rehab stint at Triple-A Omaha. Gordon had been out with a groin injury.
Orioles: LHP Wei-Yin Chen tries to keep his unbeaten streak intact Wednesday night. He is 3-0 with three no-decisions since July 21.
Royals: RHP Johnny Cueto makes his sixth start since being traded to Kansas City. He is 2-2 with a 3.00 ERA since leaving the Reds.