Play it again -- Rangers 3, Orioles 0

September 24, 2007|By JEFF ZREBIEC

OPPORTUNITIES NOT LACKING

The Orioles had plenty of chances early against Texas starter Kevin Millwood but couldn't hit the ball out of the infield when necessary. In the first and fifth innings, they had men on first and third bases with one out, and Miguel Tejada and Luis Hernandez hit into double plays. They also had men on second and third with two outs in the second and eighth, but Freddie Bynum struck out in the second and Aubrey Huff grounded out in the eighth. It was the Orioles' fourth shutout this month.

ROAD WORRIERS

The loss in the final road game of the season gave the Orioles a 34-47 record away from Camden Yards. Only the Toronto Blue Jays, Tampa Bay Devil Rays, Kansas City Royals and Rangers have fewer road wins than the Orioles in the American League. The Orioles finished four games better on the road this season than they did last year, when the team went 30-51 under manager Sam Perlozzo. Overall, the 34 road victories are the third most the Orioles have had in the past eight seasons.

LEICESTER LOGS INNINGS

More than anything else yesterday, the Orioles needed innings from starter Jon Leicester, and the right-hander delivered. He pitched his first career complete game but wound up with the loss as he gave up seven hits in eight innings. The Rangers scored twice off him with two outs in the second, a rally that started with Jason Botts' double. Nelson Cruz followed with an RBI triple, and Gerald Laird drove him in with an infield single. Texas added a run in the sixth on Marlon Byrd's groundout.

ON DECK

Daniel Cabrera (9-17, 5.51) returns to the mound tonight after a six-game suspension to face the Kansas City Royals and their No. 1 starter, veteran right-hander Gil Meche (9-12, 3.70). It is a makeup from the game originally scheduled for April 15 that was rained out. Cabrera has lost five straight decisions and with one more loss will tie Jim Wilson (1955), Pat Dobson (1972) and Rodrigo Lopez (2006) for the second most losses in a season in franchise history.

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