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Fourth straight win for the Orioles behind eight innings from Bundy

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USA Today Sports

Fourth straight win for the Orioles behind eight innings from Bundy

BALTIMORE -- Dylan Bundy allowed three hits over a career-high eight innings, newcomer Tim Beckham had two hits and scored twice and the resurgent Baltimore Orioles beat the Kansas City Royals 7-2 Tuesday night for their fourth straight victory.

Seth Smith drove in three runs to help the Orioles move within two games of .500 (52-54) for the first time since July 3.

Kansas City will seek to avoid a three-game sweep on Wednesday. The Royals came to town having won 10 of 11, but they've only scored three runs in these two games at Camden Yards.

Bundy (10-8) struck out five and walked one. The right-hander had not pitched more than seven innings in any of his previous 34 major league starts.

All three hits Bundy allowed were singles -- none after the third inning -- and he retired the final 13 batters he faced. The only run he allowed was unearned.

Brad Brach gave up a run in the ninth.

Baltimore's winning streak began over the weekend and gained momentum late Monday after the front office decided to be buyers at the non-waiver trade deadline, obtaining Beckham from Tampa Bay for a minor league pitcher.

Making his debut with Baltimore on Tuesday after playing his first 238 major league games with the Rays, the shortstop singled and scored in the fifth inning and doubled in the seventh before coming home on a single by Smith.

The victory pulled Baltimore within 3 games of Kansas City for the final AL wild-card spot.

Baltimore took a 2-0 lead against Ian Kennedy (4-7) in the first inning, bunching together four straight hits -- including an RBI single by Jonathan Schoop and a run-scoring double by rookie Trey Mancini.

After Kansas City scored in the third, Adam Jones made it 3-1 in the fourth with a two-out RBI single.

Kennedy gave up four runs and eight hits in four-plus innings. He was 4-0 in nine starts since June 5.

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Wade Miley roughed up again, Orioles shut out in St. Pete

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Wade Miley roughed up again, Orioles shut out in St. Pete

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Evan Longoria and Logan Morrison homered Friday night and the Tampa Bay Rays clinched third place in the AL East with a 7-0 victory over the Baltimore Orioles.

Longoria led off the fifth with his 20th homer off Baltimore starter Wade Miley, marking Longoria's fifth straight 20-homer season and the ninth of his 10-year career.

RELATED: WILD CARD RACES WITH THREE DAYS REMAINING

Morrison hit his 38th homer off reliever Chris Tillman in the seventh.

Rays starter Jake Odorizzi left his final start of the season after four innings with a sore right knee.

Brad Boxberger (4-4) got the win as the first of four Tampa Bay relievers.

Miley (8-15) lost his fifth straight start, giving up four runs and five hits in four innings. He walked five, raising his major league-leading total to 93. The Baltimore bullpen gave up five more walks.

Trey Mancini had one of Baltimore's four hits. It was Mancini's 158th hit, tying Cal Ripken (1982) for second-place all-time among Oriole rookies.

The Orioles, shut out for the 11th time, lost for the 17th time in 21 games and dropped three games behind Tampa Bay with two games left in the season.

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MLB Wild Card Standings: Projecting the standings with three days left

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USA TODAY Sports

MLB Wild Card Standings: Projecting the standings with three days left

With the MLB postseason only five days away and three more days in the regular season the playoff field is almost set.

After Thursday night’s action, the St. Louis Cardinals were eliminated from the second Wild Card spot in the National League. Their 2-1 loss to the Cubs put them too far out of reach of the Rockies.

In the American League the AL East race is all but done after the Yankees lost on Thursday.

RELATED: NEW MLB BRACKET PROJECTION WITH ONE WEEK TO GO

AMERICAN LEAGUE

Not too many changes in the American League race after yesterday.

The New York Yankees (89-70) lost to the Tampa Bay Rays 9-6 at home after entering the day only three games back in the division. While the Boston Red Sox (92-67) lost too, three games to surpass is too much for even the Bronx Bombers to overcome.

It will be interesting though to watch both teams sweat. Boston hosts the Houston Astros who are trying to overtake the Indians for the top seed in the AL. New York hosts division rivals Toronto.

The Minnesota Twins (83-76) lost to the Indians after allowing 10 hits in the contest. Win or lose it does not matter how they end the season because they will be the No. 5 seed and the visitors in the American League Wild Card Game. Presumably it will be against the Yankees.

AL WILD CARD RACE (AS OF SEPT 29):

New York Yankees:     +6.0 
Minnesota Twins:           ---
 

NATIONAL LEAGUE

Colorado was off on Thursday night in preparation for their final series of the year against the Los Angeles Dodgers.

The Milwaukee Brewers (84-75) did manage to gain a half game with their nail biting 4-3 win over the Reds. Brett Phillips hit a go-ahead double in the sixth inning and the final three frames remained scoreless for both squads.

They now move to two games back of the Colorado Rockies (86-73) with three games to go.

Colorado will host their final series against the Dodgers. Milwaukee is traveling to the St. Louis Cardinals (82-77) for their final three games. St. Louis is now out of contention, four games out of the final Wild Card spot.

FanGraphs.com now has Colorado at a 93.3 percent chance of taking the final postseason spot.  Milwaukee moved up slightly to 6.7 percent.

MORE NATS: WALK-OFF FOR THE NATS, COURTESY OF DE AZA

NL WILD CARD RACE (AS OF SEPT 29):

#4 Arizona Diamondbacks:  +6.0
Colorado Rockies:                   ---
Milwaukee Brewers:              -2.0