The Baltimore Orioles' latest loss had been over for almost an hour, and Manager Earl Weaver was still pacing his office.

He muttered to himself. He chain-smoked. He replayed 10 pitches of tonight's 6-1 loss to the Kansas City Royals. He projected 10 pitches for the next game.

Finally, he asked an unanswerable question, one he already has asked about two dozen times this season.

"What are we gonna do?" he said.

He had just seen the Orioles lose because Kansas City's Danny Jackson and Steve Farr combined on a six-hitter before 30,516 at Memorial Stadium and because Steve Balboni and George Brett homered.

He had seen Ken Dixon (9-8) lose for the first time in four starts. He did not pitch badly, allowing five hits in seven-plus innings before relievers Odell Jones and Brad Havens were lit up for two runs in two innings of work.

More than that, Weaver had seen the 49-43 Orioles at their 49-43 best.

They had about two chances to score, leaving two runners on base in the first inning and three on in the sixth. They hit into three more double plays and got their only run on Fred Lynn's 15th homer.

And, worst of all, their offense was again concentrated in a few spots, with the top four in the batting order getting five hits and the bottom five getting one hit in 17 at-bats.

"How many chances did we even have to score tonight?" Weaver asked. "Two in nine innings? That's nothing. I don't know what to think. We're getting nothing out of a few spots in the lineup. We're going to talk some more tomorrow."

Weaver and General Manager Hank Peters will talk Tuesday about what might be done to improve the American League's 11th-highest scoring offense.

Among the options will be sending Mike Young (.234, five homers, 30 RBIs) and/or someone else to the minors and recalling outfielder Ken Gerhart from Rochester or infielder Tom Dodd from Charlotte.

Almost no one in the organization believes they are the answers, but almost no one believes there's much to lose, either.

Whatever move the Orioles make, if any, will be too late to help Dixon, who pitched well for the fifth straight start -- a period during which he has a 1.58 ERA -- but saw his three-game winning streak end because he also made a couple of mistakes.

The game was tied, 1-1, through seven innings, with the Royals scoring in the second on Brett's homer and the Orioles tying it in the fourth on Lynn's. Into the seventh, Dixon had outpitched Jackson, having allowed only three hits and retired 11 Royals in a row at one point and five at another.

But almost before Weaver could have his bullpen ready, Dixon gave Frank White a leadoff walk in the eighth. Balboni followed by lining an RBI double into the left field corner, and the Royals had the winning run.

They scored two more runs in the inning, one when Jones allowed Willie Wilson an RBI single and another when rookie first baseman Jim Traber made an error.

Then in the ninth, the Royals scored two runs when Havens walked White and Balboni homered to right, his 19th of the season. (The Royals have only 72 as a team, 28 by Brett and Balboni.)

"They capitalized, and we didn't," Dixon said. "We had the bases loaded once and didn't score any runs. They put it out of reach. We could easily have done it, but didn't. I'm not going to get much better than I've been lately, but you have to have a few breaks in this game."

Jackson beat the Orioles for the second time in 12 days, having combined with Bud Black on a three-hit shutout in Kansas City. Even Weaver, upset with his team's hitting, saluted Jackson.

"He helped them win the World Series last year, didn't he?" Weaver said. "He's got a good slider and a good fastball. He gets some credit."

Mike Ferraro, the Royals' acting manager, agreed, saying: "He had good movement on his fastball. He's tough to hit off of whether you're a left-hander or a right-hander. He's no picnic, no day at the beach. I've seen first basemen having a tough time catching it when the ball is hit back to the mound."

The Orioles had only a couple of chances, one coming in the first inning when Lee Lacy drew a one-out walk and Cal Ripken got a two-out single. With two runners on, though, Juan Beniquez flied to center.

In the sixth, the Orioles loaded the bases. Alan Wiggins (two for four) singled, stole second and went to third on Lacy's fly. Lynn grounded out for the second out, but Jackson walked Ripken and hit Beniquez with a pitch to load the bases.

Dempsey flied out deep to left to end the inning, however, and the Orioles never got another runner as far as third. Jackson left after seven innings and Farr finished up for his fifth save.

After the game, the Orioles sent catcher Al Pardo back to Rochester to make room for pitcher Storm Davis on the roster. Pardo hit .137 in 16 games but did get his first major league home run. He was two for 19 in his last five games . . . Doctors have told reliever Tippy Martinez he doesn't need surgery on his sore left arm but have advised him to take a long rest . . . Tonight's victory ended an 11-game road losing streak for the Royals.

A's 5, Red Sox 2: Left-hander Curt Young held Boston to three hits over 8 2/3 innings and Dave Kingman and Tony Phillips homered as Oakland won at home.

The Red Sox, who lost for the fifth time in six games, had their American League East lead over the New York Yankees cut to five games.

The A's, the AL West's last-place team, won for the sixth time in seven games and beat the Red Sox for only the third time in 10 games this year.

Bruce Hurst (5-4), making his first start for Boston since suffering a groin injury May 31, lasted 5 1/3 innings. He gave up five runs, seven hits and three walks.

Yankees 8, Rangers 4: Mike Pagliarulo and Rickey Henderson homered in a four-run first inning in New York to lead the Yankees over Texas.

Rookie right-hander Doug Drabek (2-2) yielded eight hits over 6 2/3 innings, working in and out of trouble. Dave Righetti relieved Drabek with two out in the seventh and earned his 22nd save.

Henderson led off the first with his 15th homer and Pagliarulo hit a three-run homer, his 23rd homer of the season, later in the inning.

Rangers shortstop Scott Fletcher extended his hitting streak to 17 games with a double in the fifth.

Blue Jays 8, Mariners 3: Toronto won in Seattle behind a 16-hit offense that included two home runs each from George Bell and Jesse Barfield.

Barfield has 23 home runs and is tied with Oakland's Jose Canseco and New York's Mike Pagliarulo for the AL lead. Bell has five homers in his last four games and 22 for the year.

Rookie left-hander John Cerutti (5-2) pitched his second complete game for the victory.

Twins 1, Tigers 0: Kirby Puckett scored from first base on a single and Frank Viola and Keith Atherton combined on a four-hitter as Minnesota won in Detroit.

Puckett, who walked to open the sixth inning, scored when Kirk Gibson made a weak throw from right field and Alan Trammell's relay was in the dirt following Kent Hrbek's bloop single.

The run broke up a scoreless duel between Viola (10-8) and Mark Thurmond (0-1).

Indians 5, White Sox 2: Rich Yett pitched 4 2/3 innings of two-hit, shutout relief and Mel Hall drove in two runs with his 17th homer of the season and a single to lead Cleveland past visiting Chicago.

Yett (4-0) retired 14 of 16 White Sox hitters after replacing Brian Oelkers in the fifth.

Brewers 5, Angels 3: In Anaheim, Calif., Milwaukee right-hander Bill Wegman gave up five hits in seven-plus innings for his first victory in more than a month.

Wegman (3-8) walked one and struck out two to halt a winless streak of six starts.