Ultimately, the Los Angeles Angels won, 3-1, in a tremendous pitchers' duel between two guys who like to throw strikes — and lots of them. Angels right-hander Jered Weaver and Orioles lefty Wei-Yin Chen kept the offense to a minimum in a game that lasted just 2 hours, 23 minutes.
But the timing was perfect for the Orioles, who scored two runs through monsoon-like rain in the bottom of the sixth, then held on following a two-hour, 14-minute rain delay for a 4-3 win over the Los Angeles Angels that was completed just 10 minutes before midnight.
Showalter was announced Wednesday night as one of three finalists for the Baseball Writers' Association of America's award after leading the Orioles to a 93-69 record and their first playoff appearance since 1997.
When the Orioles and Tampa Bay Rays begin a three-game series Tuesday at Camden Yards, the two most effective relievers in the American League will be in uniform. It's fair to speculate that without Orioles closer Jim Johnson and Rays closer Fernando Rodney, their teams probably wouldn't be in playoff contention.
Orioles manager Buck Showalter said he doesn't pay attention to the standings until August. For the past 14 years, Orioles fans haven't had the need to, their team usually already long out of contention by this time of the year.
Despite a struggling offense, holes within their starting rotation and losing 13 out of their last 19 games, the Orioles ended went into this week¿s all-star break still clinging to the second wild-card spot.
When Joe Mahoney arrived in Southern California on Thursday to fill the Orioles empty roster spot created when Chris Tillman was optioned, he didn¿t know when ¿ or if ¿ he¿d see his first major-league action before the all-start break.
Before Wednesday's game, the Orioles optioned utility man Steve Tolleson to Triple-A Norfolk to make room for right-handed reliever Matt Lindstrom, who was activated from the 15-day disabled list (right middle finger).
Matt Wieters, who has emerged as a leader for the Orioles, will make his All-Star Game debut on Tuesday night. Buck Showalter believes the experience will be good for his young catcher. ... ... Roy Halladay and Jered Weaver are the starting pitchers for the All-Star Game. ... Robinson Cano won the Home Run Derby on Monday night. ... Orioles left fielder Luke Scott and pitcher Justin Duchscherer were examined by team orthopedist John Wilckens. ... Gale Sayers said the NFL and its players could have done more for former Baltimore Colts tight end John Mackey, who passed away last week. ... Ray Rice got into a Twitter fight with Pittsburgh's Ryan Clark.
Long a solid center fielder and one of baseball's best baserunners, Curtis Granderson has turned into a beast at the plate since working with New York Yankees hitting coach Kevin Long to rework his swing.