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AL East Champs! Baltimore Orioles clinch division for first time since 2014

Baltimore still buzzing as fans hope for long Orioles' postseason run
Baltimore still buzzing as fans hope for long Orioles' postseason run 03:12

BALTIMORE -- The Orioles are the American League East champions for the first time since 2014.

On Thursday night, the O's defeated the Boston Red Sox 2-0 at Camden Yards ending the nearly decade-long drought. The Orioles (100-59) also won 100 games in a season for the first time since 1980.

"It was the AL Beast again this year, and we knew it," outfielder Austin Hays said. "We had to battle ... but here we are. We did it."  

Thursday was a night of celebration at Camden Yards. 

"There were so many rough nights in '19 and '21," manager Brandon Hyde said. "There's a lot of guys that were in that clubhouse that are celebrating right now."  

In the middle of the game, the team announced on the scoreboard after the third inning that it had reached an agreement with the state, keeping the Orioles in Baltimore for at least the next 30 years. The team's lease at Camden Yards was set to expire at the end of 2023.

During the seventh-inning stretch, the scoreboard had another treat for Baltimore fans — the sight of Orioles great Cal Ripken in attendance.

"I was feeling anxiety," said Adley Rutschman, the star catcher who was Baltimore's designated hitter Thursday. "I was so anxious in the dugout, just so excited watching Wellsie go out there and do his thing."  

In 2014, Baltimore won the American League East with 96 wins. It swept Detroit in the American League Divisional Series.

However, the Orioles were then swept by the Kansas City Royals in the American League Championship Series.

This year, the Orioles are the No. 1 seed in the postseason and will have home-field advantage until at least the World Series, if they continue to win.

Their first postseason game will be in the ALDS on Saturday, October 7.

The Orioles have only had 100+ wins four times - in 1980 (100), 1979 (102), 1971 (101), 1970 (108) and 1969 (109).

But, they are looking to win their first World Series title since 1983. They also won World Series championships in 1970 and 1966.

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