The Orioles had their best season since 1997, but the finish left something to be desired in Baltimore.
Like a home playoff game, for example.
Entering the season's final series in Tampa Bay, Baltimore held its own fate, with the potential for at least one postseason game at Oriole Park at Camden Yards.
But after Evan Longoria homered three times, the Orioles boarded a plane for Texas, where they will visit the Rangers in the American League wild-card play-in game.
Texas seemed destined to win the American League West, just as much as the Orioles seemed locked into the top wild-card slot for the weeks leading up to the finish. But Oakland defeated Texas on Wednesday, clinching the West and sending Texas to the wild-card game.
Had the Orioles won Wednesday, they would have hosted Friday's one-game first-round game. Had Baltimore won with a Yankees loss, the Orioles and New York would have met Thursday at Oriole Park at Camden Yards to determine the division champ.
With a win against Texas on Friday, the Orioles would host Game 1 of the American League Division Series on Sunday against the Yankees.