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Johnson slams door on Yanks in Game 2

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Johnson slams door on Yanks in Game 2

Jim Johnson is back.
Well, its not like he was ever gone or left. Just kind of went AWOL for a few minutes Sunday night in the ninth inning of Game 1 of the ALDS against the Yankees.
However, the big right-hander returned with a vengeance in the ninth inning of Game 2 Monday night. The Birds were holding a 3-2 lead, and manager Buck Showalter called on him to close the door.
Johnson got Derek Jeter on a first-pitch ground-out, using a nasty sinker. Ichiro grounded out also before Alex Rodriguez ran the count full, and Johnson struck him out. Twelve pitches, eight strikes, ballgame.
I looked at the tape this morning, Johnson said. I went out and played catch to try and do something different. I had a little bit better feel on my fastball today and I was able to locate it better.

He relied heavily on his fastballsinker, and the Yankees couldnt handle it this time. Most teams couldnt handle it this year as Johnson finished with 51 saves. He was a rock for the Orioles in his role as a closer, but no closer can be perfect. Even Mariano Rivera has blown a few saves.
But Johnson said giving up the five runs in the ninth inning of Game 1 was over. He wanted to right the ship and get another chance. He said youve got to put the bad stuff out of your mind and move on to the next day.
Thats what he did.
You want the ball right away, Johnson said. You dont want to sit on it. You want to redeem yourself right away.
He did just that. The Orioles werent worried about him. That was obvious in the locker room after Game 1. Showalter said he never blinked or thought about bringing in anyone else. Jim Johnson is his closer.
Its real easy, like I said last night, to trust Jim Johnson, Showalter said. Hes done it a few times for us. He hasnt had many it really wasnt a blown save, it was pitching in a tie game in the ninth inning. Regardless if it was or wasnt, Jimmy would have been out there again tonight. Hes having a special year, a special year.

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2018 MLB All-Star Game voting update: Manny Machado maintains big lead among A.L. shortstops

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USA Today Sports

2018 MLB All-Star Game voting update: Manny Machado maintains big lead among A.L. shortstops

Baltimore Orioles’ Manny Machado took an even larger lead in the latest update for 2018 MLB All-Star Game voting.

The superstar shortstop maintained his position at the top of American League shortstops in the second round of All-Star voting updates, released Tuesday morning. 

After the first ballot was released, Machado led the shortstops category by over 100,00 votes.

This week, he now holds north of a 200,000-vote lead over last year’s American League starter, Carlos Correa.

The Astros’ Correa jumped from fourth to second this past week while the Indians’ Francisco Lindor dropped to third.  

Machado now has 671,133 votes, seventh among all American League players. For the second straight week, Machado remained the only Orioles player on the list.

Through 69 games in 2018, Machado is batting .310 with 18 home runs, 15 doubles and 53 RBIs. He is posting his best OPS (.945) and on-base percentage (.377) in his career, a bright spot for the O’s, who sit dead last in MLB with a 20-50 record.

The All-Star voting will be open until July 5 at 11:59 p.m. ET and fans can vote five times every 24 hours.

The next AL voting update will be announced June 26.

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2018 MLB All-Star Game Voting Results: Orioles' Manny Machado leading all American League shortstops in All-Star Game votes

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USA TODAY Sports

2018 MLB All-Star Game Voting Results: Orioles' Manny Machado leading all American League shortstops in All-Star Game votes

The Orioles' Manny Machado is the early leader among American League shortstops in the first results of All-Star voting released by Major League Baseball Tuesday.

Machado holds a lead of 110,131 votes over the Cleveland Indians' Francisco Lindor. 

No other Orioles' player is on the list, and Adam Jones isn't listed among the top-15 of outfielders. 

The Astros' Carlos Correa was last year’s starting shortstop for the American League, but is in fourth place with 206,707 votes, trailing the Yankees' Didi Gregorius who has 208,583.

The next AL voting update will be announced June 19.