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Orioles down the stretch (Sept. 21)

[Back for its second year, "Down the Stretch" is a daily Orioles Insider blog that will set up the coming night for the O's and their American League competition as the push for the postseason continues.]

About last night

Orioles lose the longest game in their history
Machado leads off in funky Orioles lineup
Manny is the majors' leader in Web Gems
Miguel Gonzalez gets tonight's start vs. Rays
Friday's full scoreboard


AL wild-card standings

TB        84-69     --
CLE      84-70     --
TEX      83-70    0.5
BAL      81-72    2.5
KC       81-72    2.5
NYY     81-73      3

(For full standings, click here.)


Today's game

Orioles at Rays, 1:05 p.m.

RHP Miguel Gonzalez (10-7, 3.92 ERA) vs. RHP Alex Cobb (9-3, 3.02 ERA)


Key matchup

Gonzalez has been great at Tropicana Field, but Evan Longoria (5-for-14, .357) and Jose Molina (4-for-11, .364) have had success against him, both homering.

Other games that matter

Giants (Vogelsong) at Yankees (Nova), 1:05 p.m.

Astros (Clemens) at Indians (Kazmir), 6:05 p.m.

Rangers (Garza) at Royals (Guthrie), 7:10 p.m.


Thought of the day

That game last night was really long.


Inside enemy clubhouses

Yankees' Andy Pettitte to retire (again)

A-Rod break's Gehrig's grand slam record

Soria returns to Kansas City as a Ranger

Francona trusts Indians closer Chris Perez


david.selig@baltsun.com

twitter.com/DaveSelig

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