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O's Davis Continues Domination


It's no coincidence: Eric Davis has been on a tear since the All-Star break, and so have the Baltimore Orioles.
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  • Davis had his fourth two-homer game of the season and drove in four runs Tuesday night as the Orioles beat the Minnesota Twins 7-1 to sweep the two-game series.

    Baltimore is 29-8 since the break, winning 11 of 13 series and sweeping seven. Davis, who went 3-for-4, is hitting .385 with 13 homers and 40 RBI in 35 games over that span.

    "Here's the most important thing -- how well I've played is indicative of how the team has done," he said.

    "He's doing a lot of the carrying of the Orioles right now," Minnesota manager Tom Kelly said. "You've got to admire what he's done. He's playing very, very well."

    Despite moving nine games over .500 for the first time this season, the Orioles (67-58) lost ground in the wild-card race. Baltimore fell seven games behind Boston, which swept a doubleheader from Texas.

    Davis, who sat out Monday night's game after having his 30-game hitting streak end Sunday in Cleveland, returned with a flourish. He hit a solo shot in the first inning, and gave the Orioles a 5-1 lead in the seventh with his 24th homer, a three-run drive that traveled an estimated 422 feet.

    "The day off just cleared my mind. It was something where I could step back and put (the streak) in perspective," Davis said.

    "One day off and Eric comes back awesome," Baltimore manager Ray Miller said. "He goes the opposite way and then hits a bomb."

    Rookie Sidney Ponson (7-6) allowed one run in six innings to improve to 6-in nine starts since June 26. He gave up seven hits, walked one and struck out two.

    "I'm just trying to help this ballclub stay in the race. I was happy to contribute tonight," said Ponson, 21, who had never pitched above the Double-A level before this year.

    Baltimore won the season series 7-3 and outscored the Twins 60-37. Over the past two seasons the Orioles are 17-4 against Minnesota, including 9-1 at home.

    Brad Radke (10-11) allowed five runs on eight hits in 6 2/3 innings. He is 0-3 with an 8.00 ERA against Baltimore this season and winless in his last four starts.

    "That was probably one of the best starts I've had since the All-Star break," Radke said. "I was feeling good and throwing the pitches where I wanted to. It's coming around, piece by piece."

    With the score 1-1 in the sixth, Brady Anderson and Davis singled before Harold Baines lofted a two-out, broken-bat RBI single to right.

    Davis' second homer of the game chased Radke. It was the 17th multihomer game of his career.

    "He had thrown everybody a change-up but me," Davis said. "I wasn't looking for it, but I recognized it and gave it a ride."

    Roberto Alomar completed the scoring with a two-run single in the eighth.

    Davis put the Orioles ahead in the first by hitting an opposite-field drive over the right-field wall. The Twins tied it in the third when Todd Walker doubled and scored on a single by Pat Meares, who extended his hitting streak to a career-high 13 games.

    Minnesota stranded runners in the second through sixth innings.

    "It got away from us late," Kelly said. "We couldn't get enough hits to win the ballgame."

    Notes

  • Minnesota outfielder Otis Nixon was scratched from the lineup with a strained left hamstring. He's day-to-day.
  • Baltimore has homered in 33 of 37 games since the All-Star break.
  • Cal Ripken went 2-for-4 and has reached base either by hit, walk or hit-by-pitch in 42 straight games.
  • Walker went 2-for-4 and was 15-for-40 (.375) against Baltimore this season.

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