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Orioles snap six-game losing streak, beat Blue Jays 2-1

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USA Today Sports

Orioles snap six-game losing streak, beat Blue Jays 2-1

TORONTO -- Orioles right-hander Kevin Gausman didn't expect his team's struggling offense to produce much against Blue Jays ace Marcus Stroman.

As it turned out, the two runs Baltimore scored off Stroman in the first inning were just enough for Gausman to get the job done.

Adam Jones had two hits and an RBI, Gausman pitched seven strong innings and Baltimore beat Toronto 2-1 on Wednesday night, snapping a six-game losing streak.

MORE ORIOLES: TIM BECKHAM HAS BECOME A STEAL FOR O'S

The Orioles have scored two runs or fewer in six of their past seven.

"Stroman was pitching today so I knew runs were going to be at a premium," Gausman said. "Once we got those two runs I just kind of told myself `Hey, those are your runs, that's all you're going to get today.' Unfortunately, that's the way it was but luckily I was able to pound the strike zone, keep mixing my pitches and keep them off balance."

Gausman (11-10) allowed one run and six hits, improving to 3-0 with a 1.51 ERA in six starts against the Blue Jays this season, as the Orioles won for the first time since Sept. 5 against the Yankees.

"That was very big," said outfielder Trey Mancini, who hit an RBI triple in the first. "At this point in the year there's not many games left so you want to win every single one. Today was a good start to try and get that rolling."

The Orioles began the day 4 1/2 games behind Minnesota for the second AL wild card spot.

"We're right there," Gausman said. "We've just got to keep winning games."

Kendrys Morales had three hits for the Blue Jays, whose four-game winning streak was halted.

Darren O'Day pitched the eighth and Zach Britton finished for his 14th save in 16 chances. Britton gave up two runs in the ninth inning Tuesday as the Orioles lost 3-2.

Baltimore's Tim Beckham began the game by reaching on third baseman Josh Donaldson's throwing error. Two outs later, Beckham scored when Jones doubled over the head of left fielder Teoscar Hernandez. Mancini followed with an RBI triple off the wall in center.

Toronto halved the deficit in the third when Hernandez hit a leadoff double and scored on Richard Urena's bloop double to shallow left.

Baltimore loaded the bases with nobody out in the fourth but couldn't score. Stroman struck out Seth Smith and Caleb Joseph grounded into a double play.

Blue Jays trainer George Poulis and manager John Gibbons came to the mound to check on Stroman in the sixth, but the right-hander stayed in the game after throwing one practice pitch. Stroman walked Davis to put runners at first and second with one out but escaped by getting Smith to ground into a double play.

Stroman (11-8) said he was briefly bothered by tightness in his forearm, chalking it up to lingering soreness from his Sept. 2 start at Baltimore when he was hit in the right elbow by a Mark Trumbo line drive and had to leave in the second inning.

"I'm still dealing with that and I threw six days after that," said Stroman, who started against Detroit on Sept. 8. "Still battling, nothing I'm worried about. Got a little tightness on one particular pitch but it felt fine the pitch after."

Stroman allowed two runs and six hits in six innings. He is winless in five starts.

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American League All-Star Game Roster Projection: AL will be loaded once again

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American League All-Star Game Roster Projection: AL will be loaded once again

The 2018 Major League All-Star Game is less than a month away. Fan votes are well underway and early frontrunners are close to locking their position in the Midsummer Classic.

Yesterday, we projected how the National League roster will play out. Today it is time to look at the American League roster projection.

For five straight seasons, the AL has had the upper hand in the MLB All-Star Game. In 2018, it does not appear that will change as the American League roster will be loaded from top to bottom.

As a reminder, here is how the process shakes out, first with the fan vote, players’ ballots, and the MLB Commissioner’s Office:

  • Fan vote: nine position players in AL (DH)/ eight in NL; plus final vote for each league
  • Player’s ballots: next 17 players in AL/ 16 players in NL; (five starting pitchers, three relievers must be chosen)
  • MLB Commissioner’s Office: five AL players (four pitchers, one position player) and seven NL players (four pitchers, three position players)

One player from each team must make the initial roster (before injury withdraws, etc.). Below is how it looks the American League roster will play out, considering the latest fan vote returns:

American League All-Star Roster Projection:

C – Wilson Ramos, Rays (Fan Vote), Gary Sánchez, Yankees (Player Ballot)
1B – José Abreu, White Sox (Fan Vote), Joey Gallo, Rangers (Player Ballot)
2B – Jose Altuve, Astros (Fan Vote), Jed Lowrie, Athletics (Player Ballot)
3B – José Ramírez, Indians (Fan Vote), Yangervis Solarte, Blue Jays (Player Ballot), Mike Moustakas, Royals (Commissioner’s Office)
SS – Manny Machado, Orioles (Fan Vote), Jean Segura, Mariners (Player Ballot),
OF – Mookie Betts, Red Sox (Fan Vote), Mike Trout, Angels (Fan Vote), Aaron Judge, Yankees (Fan Vote), Michael Brantley, Indians (Player Ballot), Eddie Rosario, Twins (Player Ballot), Giancarlo Stanton, Yankees (Player Ballot),
DH – J.D. Martinez, Red Sox (Fan Vote), Shohei Ohtani, Angels (Player Ballot)

SP – Justin Verlander, Astros (Player Ballot), Luis Severino, Yankees (Player Ballot), Corey Kluber, Indians (Player Ballot), Chris Sale, Red Sox (Player Ballot), Gerrit Cole, Astros (Player Ballot), Blake Snell, Tampa Bay (Commissioner’s Office)

RP – Edwin Díaz, Mariners (Player Ballot), Craig Kimbrel, Red Sox (Player Ballot), Aroldis Chapman, Yankees (Player Ballot), Joe Jiménez, Tigers (Commissioner’s Office), Delin Betances, Yankees (Commissioner’s Office), Chris Devenski, Astros (Commissioner’s Office)

Manager: Jeff Luhnow, Astros

Based on this projection, the New York Yankees will have the most representatives with six. The Houston Astros and Boston Red Sox will both have four.

Ensuring no snubs, there will be five players selected for the final fan vote to get one more All-Star into the game for a total of 32 for the American League. As you can see, no matter how the AL roster plays out, it will be a dominant team once again as they look for six straight All-Star wins.

Four of those five wins were inside a National League stadium and that will not change as the Washington Nationals will host this season.

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

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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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