Wakeup call: Can anything stop the Orioles?

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Wakeup call: Can anything stop the Orioles?

Here's your wakeup call -- a combination of newsworthy andor interesting tidbits -- for Wednesday, September 12:

BASEBALL
Their players keep dropping and they keep on winning. Can anything stop the Orioles? (CSN Baltimore)

The Yankees aren't the only historic franchise in freefall. (AP)

Eleven straight wins on the road (and the latest was a doozy). Twenty-one games over .500. Three games out in the division and in a tie for the wild-card lead. Who are these guys?? (CSN Bay Area)

Forget winning the division. Forget making the playoffs. (Both of those possibilities seemed more than doable not too long ago.) How about just avoiding your 20th straight losing season, Pirates? (NBC's Hardball Talk)

They're loving that extra wild-card berth in Philadelphia right about now. (CSN Philly)

Yes, that's ex-Red Sox farmhand Brandon Moss threatening to become the seventh player in history to hit 20 homers in a season of 250 or fewer at-bats. (Hardball Talk) And the hits just keep on coming . . .

You know you throw hard when you hit 96 on the gun and alarm bells about decreased velocity start sounding. (AP)

Brandon McCarthy has gone home from the hospital. (CSN Bay Area)

COLLEGE BASKETBALL
The strange journey of Billy Gillispie is winding its way to the Mayo Clinic. (AP)

COLLEGE FOOTBALL
The injury bug bites at Oregon. (AP)

And Purdue. (AP)

But it's The Man who's taking out players at Mississippi. (AP)

A coach in Tennessee drops a dime on a Mississippi State freshman defensive back . . . to talk radio. (AP)

Coming Saturday: UConn's first game against former coach Randy Edsall, who left for Maryland without even saying goodbye to his players. Suffice to say, the Huskies haven't forgotten. (AP)

Hey, they're student-athletes, right? (AP)

HOCKEY
Like all of us, Sidney Crosby doesn't want to think about a lockout. (NBC's Pro Hockey Talk)

PRO FOOTBALL
If Bountygate didn't teach the coaches they need a union, nothing will. (NBC's Pro Football Talk)

Speaking of which, Roger Goodell and the four players whose suspensions were lifted by an appeals panel are going to have a meeting. (AP)

The game's still a day away, but Jay Cutler's already talking trash against the Packers. (Pro Football Talk)

The Steelers hope James Harrison will be good to go Sunday against the Jets. (AP)

The headline: 'Ravens owner Modell remembered fondly at funeral'. (AP) Odds are pretty strong, then, that nobody from Cleveland was there.

Any hopes of the Patriots appearing on 'Hard Knocks' are probably out the window now. (Pro Football Talk)

Quotes, notes, and stars: "No sign" of Ortiz slowing down

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Quotes, notes, and stars: "No sign" of Ortiz slowing down

Quotes, notes, and stars from the Red Sox' 4-2 win over the Yankees.

QUOTES:

* "He gathered himself and got a little rhythm as the night went along.'' - John Farrell on Henry Owens.

* "That's a rarity for Betances to leave his breaking ball up like he did. Once David saw it up, he attacked.'' - Farrell on David Ortiz's game-winning homer.

* "There's no sign of him slowing down. Tonight is a prime example of it. Key moment, big hit when we need it. There's a long resume there and it's continuing to build.'' - Farrell on Ortiz's ability to deliver in the clutch.

* "There were some mechanical adjustments that I made. I came out a little erratic, trying to do too much, maybe focusing too much. But as game went on, I kind of got into a rhythm.'' - Owens on his start.

* "I saw him throw a lot of breaking pitches to Mookie. The one they hit stayed up a little longer than usual. He's the kind of pitcher that, if you go up there looking for everything he's got, you're done.'' - Ortiz on his game-winning homer off Dellin Betances.

NOTES:

* Over his career, David Ortiz has hit 29 go-ahead homers from the eighth inning on.

* Ortiz has eight homers in his last 24 games against the Yankees.

* The win was the first this season for the Red Sox in a game in which they were tied or trailing after seven innings.

* The Red Sox have won five of their last six and seven of their last 10.

* The Yankees have been limited to three runs or fewer in their last six games.

* In 21 games, the Yankees have faced 10 lefty starters; in 22 games, the Red Sox have faced two.

* Masahiro Tanaka has issued just one walk in his last three starts.

STARS:

1) David Ortiz

With one swing of the bat, Ortiz untied a 2-2 game in the bottom of the eighth with a game-winning two-run homer.

2) Jackie Bradley Jr.

Bradley's penchant for delivering a big hit continued as he rapped a two-run double to left in the seventh to erase a 2-0 Yankee lead.

3) Masahiro Tanaka

He shut the Red Sox for six innings before allowing three hits and two runs in the seventh.

First impressions from the Red Sox' 4-2 win: Ortiz has flair for the dramatic

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First impressions from the Red Sox' 4-2 win: Ortiz has flair for the dramatic

First impressions from the Red Sox' 4-2 win over New York Yankees...

* David Ortiz still has a flair for the dramatic.

Matched against Yankees reliever Dellin Betances, Ortiz cracked a two-run homer into the Monster Seats to snap a 2-2 tie in the eighth inning. Ortiz now has 18 RBI in 23 games -- he didn't start in four of those games - and at 40, remains the one hitter opposing teams want to face with the game on the line.

Before the homer, Ortiz was 0-for-7 against Betances, with four strikeouts.

* All things considered, Henry Owens did OK.

Owens didn't fool anybody. He couldn't command his fastball, and when the Yankees did hit it, they hit it pretty hard. He walked three and hit another. But Owens managed to limit the damage in a big way, allowing just two hits in six innings despite 10 baserunners.

Occasionally, he would get bailed out by his changeup, which seems to be the lone pitch he has that is better than average by major league standards.

* Jackie Bradley Jr. continues to hit when it counts.

Bradley got the Red Sox offense going with a two-run, two-out double off Masahiro Tanaka, when the Sox were down to their final seven outs.

In the last week along, Bradley hit an extra-inning homer; a solo homer that represented the only run of the game; a ninth-inning triple; and Friday's big two-base hit.

That he has 10 RBI from the bottom of the order suggests he can provide some sock from that spot.

* Matt Barnes continues to make strides.

Since allowing a homer to Kevin Kiermaier on the last homestand, Barnes has allowed just one run in his last four appearances, covering 6 1/3 innings, while holding opposing hitters to a .208 batting average (5-for-24).

* The Yankees bullpen gets all the attention, but in relief of Owens, Barnes, Koji Uehara and Craig Kimbrel faced nine hitters and retired them all.

McAdam: Gordon suspension is proof MLB testing works

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McAdam: Gordon suspension is proof MLB testing works

Kevin Millar, John Farrell and Sean McAdam talk about Dee Gordon’s 80-game suspension for PED violations.