Baltimore Back home after a two-week trek, the Baltimore Orioles knocked off another first-place team behind a rookie pitcher who put to rest all the talk about his supposedly tired arm.
Daniel Cabrera pitched three-hit ball into the eighth inning, and Jose Leon and Melvin Mora had two RBIs apiece to lead the surging Orioles past the Minnesota Twins, 4-1, Monday.
During a three-game stretch last month in which Cabrera yielded 20 runs and 20 hits in just over eight innings, it appeared as if he were just too tired to be effective anymore.
Even though Cabrera had already pitched more innings in one season than ever before, Baltimore manager Lee Mazzilli attributed the slump to a loss of confidence and insisted that the right-hander was strong enough to turn things around and finish the season with a flourish.
Cabrera has thus far done just that, and now it seems as if the Orioles are poised to close out the year on a positive note, too.
Cabrera (11-7) yielded one run and four walks in 71/3 innings. It was a suitable encore for his last performance, when he held Tampa Bay scoreless over 61/3 innings.
"He's gotten ahead in the count, and that's the key for him," Mazzilli said. "I think he's mechanically changed a little bit, and so he's throwing strikes again."
It was the seventh win in eight games for the Orioles. Baltimore went 0-6 on its last homestand and ended up losing 12 in a row overall.
Cabrera, who leads major-league rookies in wins, left with a runner on first in the eighth. B.J. Ryan promptly ended the inning by getting Jacque Jones to hit into a double play, the Orioles' third of the game.
Jorge Julio worked the ninth for his 21st save, a day after he walked in the winning run with the bases loaded against the New York Yankees -- Baltimore's lone defeat in a three-game series against the AL East leaders.
White Sox 7, Rangers 4
Arlington, Texas -- Carl Everett homered, and Chicago took advantage of Texas' season-high five errors.
The White Sox won their fourth straight to move 71/2 games behind the first-place Minnesota Twins in the AL Central.
Jason Grilli (1-1) gave up three runs and eight hits in 52/3 innings. Shingo Takatsu got two outs for his 17th save in 18 chances.
Michael Young homered for the fourth time in his three games for Texas, which has lost seven of eight to fall seven games behind the first-place Oakland Athletics in the AL West.
David Dellucci and Kevin Mench also homered for the Rangers, who opened a seven-game homestand after a 1-5 road trip.
Red Sox 8, Athletics 3
Oakland, Calif. -- David Ortiz homered and drove in four runs to lead Boston to its 12th win in 13 games, a wild victory over Oakland.
Manny Ramirez and Ortiz hit consecutive home runs in the fourth inning off Barry Zito, and Bronson Arroyo (8-9) pitched 62/3 strong innings to win his third straight decision.
Bill Mueller and Dave Roberts each hit RBI doubles in the seventh, and Ortiz added a three-run double in the ninth.
The Red Sox began a seven-game West Coast road trip by beating the AL West leaders, whose division lead was cut to 21/2 games over idle Anaheim.
The Red Sox remained 21/2 games behind the first-place Yankees in the AL East after New York beat Tampa Bay.
Yankees 7, Devil Rays 4
New York -- Alex Rodriguez hit a three-run double, and Orlando Hernandez won his seventh straight decision to lead New York over Tampa Bay, the Devil Rays' season-high eighth straight loss.
On another unusual day in the Bronx, an afternoon doubleheader became a single night game because Hurricane Frances caused the Devil Rays to arrive three hours after the scheduled start.
Fouled up by the hurricane, which caused consecutive postponements against Detroit on Saturday and Sunday at Tropicana Field, the Devil Rays' charter didn't even take off from Florida until five minutes before the doubleheader was scheduled to start at 3 p.m.
Major league baseball then switched it to a single game at 7 p.m., just one hour after the Devil Rays arrived at the ballpark.
The Yankees asked the commissioner's office to award them a forfeit, a request commissioner Bud Selig made clear he would reject.
Hernandez (7-0) allowed two runs and four hits in seven innings before he was ejected by plate umpire Adam Dowdy for arguing balls and strikes.
Doug Waechter (3-7) got the loss.
Indians 5, Mariners 0
Seattle -- C.C. Sabathia threw a five-hitter for his second career shutout, and Omar Vizquel hit a two-run home run to lead Cleveland over Seattle.
Travis Hafner, Casey Blake and Matt Lawton each added solo shots as the Indians snapped a five-game losing streak and handed the Mariners their sixth straight loss.
Seattle's Ichiro Suzuki went 2-for-4, getting singles in the third and ninth innings to push his season hits total to 226 -- 31 short of George Sisler's 1920 major-league record of 257 hits.
Suzuki has 25 games remaining.