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Instant analysis of Orioles' 2-1 loss to Royals in Game 4 of AL Championship Series

Immediate reaction to Game 4 of the ALCS between the Orioles and the Royals.

Baltimore Sun reporters, columnists and editors share their immediate thoughts on Game 4 of the American League Championship Series between the Orioles and the Kansas City Royals.

Eduardo A. Encina, reporter: The Orioles’ four losses in the ALCS were decided by a total of six runs. All four games were decided by two runs or less. Both games in Kansas City were one-run games. There’s definitely a fine line between winning and losing. Keep in mind that this team made a lot of memories this season, but it will be a long offseason after the Orioles fell just short. While many are left to wonder what might have happened if the Orioles had Matt Wieters, Manny Machado or Chris Davis for this series, in Baltimore, we know times like this haven’t come around all that often.

Dan Connolly, reporter: It was fun while it lasted. And though there is surely some disappointment in Baltimore, rightfully so, the bottom line is that this Orioles team went on a heck of a ride for seven months. It had a flawed roster. It dealt with two really key injuries and the suspension of another former All-Star. And yet the Orioles still got this far. No consolation, I know. But they did lose to a really complete Royals team.

Peter Schmuck, columnist: Game 4 was just a whole lot of the same stuff that happened in the first three games. The Royals pitched a little better. They hit a little better. They played defense a little better. They’re going to the World Series, and the Orioles are going back to Baltimore with a lot to figure out before next spring.

Dean Jones Jr., editor: Well, to say that was a disappointing end to the season for the Orioles is the understatement of the year. After they won their first AL East title since 1997 and swept the AL Division Series over the Detroit Tigers, it looked like the Orioles were heading to the World Series for the first time in 31 years. But someone forgot to tell the Royals. If Kansas City keeps this up, it might not just win the World Series -- it might also go 162-0 next season.

Ron Fritz, sports editor: The Royals found a way to out-Oriole the Orioles. Defense, timely hitting and a deep bullpen secured this sweep for the Royals. It’s hard not to be disappointed if you’re an Orioles fan, but the future looks really bright, especially if Manny Machado and Matt Wieters come back healthy, and there’s no reason they shouldn’t. In the playoffs two of the last three years, they can think bigger next year.

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