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Orioles' Johnson makes up for Game 1 meltdown

The SportsXchange

Jim Johnson, who had a rough night Sunday in Game 1 of the AL Division Series against the New York Yankees, was thrown right back into the fire Monday -- and what a fire it was.

The Baltimore Orioles' All-Star closer faced three future Hall of Famers: Derek Jeter, Ichiro Suzuki and Alex Rodriguez. Johnson prevailed, and the Orioles escaped with a 3-2 win to even the series.

After inducing groundouts from the first two, Johnson struck out Rodriguez on a series of hard, dancing sinkers. Johnson redeemed himself as the Orioles seek redemption for more than a decade of struggles.

Settling back in after a rough night was key for Johnson. The Orioles have thrived in tight games in 2012, thanks in great deal to Johnson and his fellow relievers.

The Orioles broke through with a few key hits with runners on base Monday after failing to do so Sunday.

Baltimore heads to New York for the final three games of the series. The first team to win two games in the Bronx advances -- and the Orioles have won six of nine in New York this season.

Having their closer back in form should only help.
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