Orioles 4, Rangers 2
The Baltimore Orioles are starting to show signs of the team that sat atop the AL East for 62 straight days earlier this season, even if it's too late to make up for their midseason slump.
Baltimore won its third straight game Monday night, after Daniel Cabrera struck out seven in 52/3 innings and the Orioles scored twice on a dropped fly ball in a 4-2 victory over the host Texas Rangers.
They've been out of the playoff chase for a long time, but the Orioles still have something to play for over the final three weeks.
"We're trying to do it for us and end on a good note. It's been such a sour middle of the year," right fielder Jay Gibbons said. "And also for our [interim] manager, Sam [Perlozzo]. Everybody wants to win for him, and we want him back."
The Orioles are 17-19 since Perlozzo was named interim manager for the rest of the season after Lee Mazzilli was fired Aug. 4. Baltimore had lost eight straight games and won just one of the previous 15 when Mazzilli was fired.
"They come out and play, no question about it," Perlozzo said. "I haven't had to say a whole lot to them. They've been getting into it. That happens when you get good starting pitching."
Cabrera (10-11) won his second consecutive start since coming off the disabled list. He gave up two runs and six hits, staying in after Kevin Mench led off the second with a line drive that ricocheted off the pitcher's backside.
"Oh yeah, just muscles," Cabrera said. "It hurt, but I'm okay."
It was Mench's fielding error in the top of that inning that led to two runs.
Baltimore had two runners on after B.J. Surhoff reached on an infield single that hit Rangers starter Edison Volquez (0-3) on the foot. After a walk, David Newhan drove in a run with a grounder and Geronimo Gil hit a fly to right.
Mench initially turned the wrong way, but appeared to recover and got his glove up to make the catch. The ball instead hit off the top of the webbing and rolled into the right field corner. Two runs scored and Baltimore led 3-1.
"It sliced away from me, that's all," Mench said.
"The ball sails pretty good out there," Manager Buck Showalter said.