Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Baltimore Ousts Texas; Orioles 5, Rangers 1; Saunders Shuts Down Two- Time Defending AL Champion

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Baltimore Ousts Texas; Orioles 5, Rangers 1; Saunders Shuts Down Two- Time Defending AL Champion

Article excerpt

ARLINGTON, Texas - Buck Showalter and the Baltimore Orioles will get another chance to overtake the New York Yankees.

The surprising O's already have beaten some big odds, getting past the two-time defending AL champion Texas Rangers and their Japanese ace, Yu Darvish, in the win-or-be-eliminated wild-card playoff game.

Joe Saunders pitched effectively into the sixth inning at a place where he never had won, Adam Jones delivered the tiebreaking sacrifice fly in the sixth and the Orioles, in the playoffs for the first time in 15 years, eliminated the Rangers 5-1 Friday night.

Jones' sacrifice fly made it 2-1 an RBI single by Nate McLouth later in the inning made it 3-1.Baltimore tacked on two runs n the ninth, including one on a McLouth sacrifice fly.

Jim Johnson, who set an Orioles record with 51 saves, allowed a walk and two hits in the botom of the inning before Murphy's game- ending flyball to left.

"With our team it's just a bunch of guys that raised the bar and wouldn't give in and still haven't," Showalter said. "Now they get a chance to win to roll the dice, and there's a lot of good card players in there."

The Orioles advanced to play the East champion Yankees, the AL's top seed - the teams split 18 games this season. The best-of-five division series starts Sunday in Baltimore.

The upstart Orioles spent the whole second half of the season chasing New York, never passing the Yankees and falling just short in a neck-and-neck race for the division title. Turns out, the Yankees haven't brushed off these Birds just yet.

"Real proud of everybody. Tacking on runs were big, knew they were going to run at you," Showalter said. "But just a real proud moment for us."

"Our guys approached it and we talked about it being sudden life instead of sudden death, and we played that way. You've got to seize the opportunity. …

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