Some Orioles magic-number magic

September 12, 2014|By Dan Connolly | The Baltimore Sun

With a doubleheader sweep of the New York Yankees at Camden Yards on Friday combined with the Toronto Blue Jays' 1-0 loss at home against the Tampa Bay Rays, the Orioles magic number is five.

Five.

What that means is if they go just 5-3 in the remaining eight games on this homestand they have clinched their first American League East title since 1997. They don’t need anyone else’s help so long as they go 5-3.

Put it another way. If they win just one of their remaining two against the Yankees this weekend and then beat the Blue Jays two of three from Monday to Wednesday, the Orioles are AL East champs.

Any combination of Blue Jays losses and Orioles wins that equal five will end the division race. And there are still 15 games to play before the end of the season.

They could clinch as early as Monday if they win their next three.

So, how well are things aligned for the Orioles right now?

Consider that the Rays took a 1-0 lead into the bottom of the ninth against the Blue Jays on Friday and had Grant Balfour close it out. Balfour, of course, is the closer the Orioles signed, and then didn’t, in the offseason. And now he’s helped them with their pennant push.

So, for everything that seemingly goes wrong for this Orioles club (See Davis, Chris), another unexpected situation seemingly goes right.

dan.connolly@baltsun.com

twitter.com/danconnollysun

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