As they move closer to the .500 mark, the Baltimore Orioles’ confidence is soaring.
The Orioles will try to extend their season-high winning streak to seven games when they conclude their four-game series against the Texas Rangers at Camden Yards.
“Right now, every time somebody takes the mound, we believe we can win,” Orioles shortstop Miguel Tejada said. “We believe we can beat anybody.”
Baltimore has not had a winning season since 1997, and manager Lee Mazzilli said the Orioles have their sights set on the break-even mark.
“Getting to .500 is our immediate goal,” Mazzilli said. “We want to get there quick, then move from there.”
Baltimore has outscored Texas 23-7 in the first three games of the series. Sidney Ponson allowed three runs over 7 2-3 innings Sunday, and Melvin Mora went 3-for-5 with a homer and four RBIs to lead the Orioles to an 11-5 win.
The Orioles finished with 13 hits, and each starter had at least one.
Brian Jordan homered for Texas, which fell to 3-3 on its seven-game road trip. The Rangers came to Baltimore in first place in the AL West, but they are now tied for second with the Anaheim Angels—1 1/2 games behind the Oakland Athletics.
As the Rangers try to close the trip on a high note, they’ll look for another encouraging start from Mike Bacsik. The 26-year-old right-hander, called up from Triple-A Oklahoma last week, was dominant in his season debut for Texas. He allowed just four hits over seven scoreless innings Wednesday in an 8-0 rout of the Detroit Tigers.
“There are a lot of days in Triple-A that you have to fight through putting the negative thoughts of not doing this in your mind,” said Bacsik, who spent parts of the past two seasons with the New York Mets. “But then something like this happens, and it’s worth it.”
Bacsik’s father, Mike, pitched for the Rangers from 1975-77, and they are the first father-son duo in franchise history.
“It’s hard to not watch a situation like that and not get emotional, knowing what it means to Mike and his family,” Texas manager Buck Showalter said.