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Orioles come up short against Yankees

Associated Press Modified: October 12, 2012 at 9:32 pm •  Published: October 12, 2012
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NEW YORK (AP) — The Baltimore Orioles came up short against the Yankees in the postseason, too.

The brash, young birds produced clutch hits all September while chasing New York. They fell one short in October.

The Orioles return to the postseason for the first time in 15 years ended with a 3-1 loss to CC Sabathia in the deciding Game 5 of the AL division series Friday.

"Every guy that was in that dugout believed that we were going to win it all until that final out was made," catcher Matt Wieters said.

After playing the rivals from New York even for 22 games this year, the Orioles' big bats had little success against the Yankees burly ace.

When they thought they did, they came out on the wrong side of another October call in New York.

In a twist reminiscent of the Baltimore-Yankees 1996 AL championship series, when 12-year-old fan Jeffrey Maier reached over the right field wall and pulled Derek Jeter's fly ball over the fence for a homer in Game 1, Nate McLouth hit a disputed fly to right in the sixth.

Unlike that game 16 years ago, McLouth's soaring two-out drive that just slipped past the foul pole was subject to video review. Right field umpire Fieldin Culbreth initially called McLouth's drive foul with a robust thrust of the arm.

Manager Buck Showalter asked for a review and four umpires went inside to check the replay. They upheld the call in a trip that lasted about 2 minutes.

A reporter for The Associated Press was shown the ball and he did not see any yellow paint from the foul pole on it.

"It was foul all the way, never hit the pole," said Steven Ellis of Queens, N.Y. He said he caught the ball with his hat.

That's the way Culbreth saw it, too.

"I saw it go to the right of the pole," he said. "There is netting there and it didn't touch the netting. It did not change direction."

McLouth then struck out.

"I knew when I was running down the line, kind of looking at it, I knew it was going to be really, really close. It started off fair and it was just hooking a little bit. I thought it was foul just in game speed," McLouth said. "A couple of people mentioned it might've ticked the pole but he was way closer than I was and I was satisfied after they went down and looked at the replay that it was foul."

The Orioles have been pursuing the Yankees all season, cutting a 10-game deficit in July to zero in early September. Baltimore and New York were tied 10 times atop the East in the final month but the Orioles lost the division on the final day of the season and finished two games back.

"As far as the local team here is concerned, we just want to tell them we will be back next year," Orioles owner Peter Angelos said of the Yankees in a rare clubhouse appearance. "They better get ready for it."

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