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BAL@CLE: Norris fans eight over seven strong innings

With Baltimore's loss and Cleveland's victory on Tuesday night, the Orioles' playoff hopes have officially been dashed.

The Indians' come-from-behind victory over the White Sox lowered Baltimore's elimination number to one, and Toronto's 10th-inning heroics took care of the rest.

The Blue Jays have been out of the playoff picture for quite some time, but have played a crucial role in the fate of their American League East foes.

The Blue Jays won their last series over the Yankees last week to put the Bronx Bombers behind the eight ball, and took care of the Orioles' chances themselves.

That means Wednesday's game doesn't have any playoff implications for either team, but the Orioles -- who have dropped six in a row -- have a chance to post a second consecutive winning season, having been stuck at 81 wins.

Looking to help accomplish that feat will be one of the newest Orioles, former Astros righty Bud Norris.

Norris last pitched in Friday's 18-inning marathon against the Rays, and was saddled with the loss after 2 1/3 innings.

His last start came Sept. 8 against the White Sox, taking the loss after not getting out of the fifth. He gave up four earned runs on nine hits and a walk, while striking out six.

"He had a lot of baserunners out there," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said of Norris.

He'll be opposing Toronto righty Esmil Rogers, who like Norris struggled in his last outing.

Against the Red Sox, Rogers lasted just 2 1/3 innings. He struggled with his command with five walks, but escaped with just two earned runs to his name while picking up the loss.

"When I was in the bullpen, my breaking pitches were unbelievable," Rogers said. "I said I was going to use my breaking pitches today because I was feeling good. When I came into the game, I don't know, my body was a little tight, and when I tried using my breaking pitches everything was a ball. ... I threw maybe one or two good ones and the other ones were all balls."

Orioles: Machado avoids serious injury
After star third baseman Manny Machado left Monday's contest, the worst was feared.

In the seventh inning, Machado hit the first-base bag awkwardly and his left knee buckled. The 21-year-old collapsed immediately and had to be removed on a stretcher.

However, an X-ray and MRI on Tuesday revealed no damage to Machado's ACL or MCL, good news considering he could not walk off the field.

It wasn't a complete bill of health though, as there was a medial patella femoral ligament tear. That type of injury comes with a recovery timetable of six to eight weeks.

Machado will get a second opinion to confirm the diagnosis, and will go the rest-and rehab route for the next four weeks. If things aren't healing perfectly, that will give Machado more than enough time to for a minor surgical procedure. He is expected to be ready for Spring Training.

Blue Jays: Goins among Minor League award winners
Ryan Goins was among the recipients of this year's R. Howard Webster Award, which recognizes the most valuable players on each of the club's Minor League affiliates.

The Blue Jays infielder was named MVP at Triple-A Buffalo, where he hit .257 with six home runs, 46 RBIs, 22 doubles and a .311 on-base percentage in 111 games.

He also provided a well-above average glove primarily at shortstop with a .981 fielding percentage, something that has been on display at second since joining the big league club in Toronto.

For Goins, it marks the second straight season he's won the award after being named MVP for Double-A New Hampshire in 2012.

"I like everything I've seen out of him," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said of Goins, who was called up at the end of August. "He was there all year long and he's just a good steady baseball player. It's a good honor for him."

Worth noting
• Over his last 16 contests since Sept. 7, Toronto's Adam Lind has six home runs, 16 RBIs and a 1.090 OPS.

• Blue Jays closer Casey Janssen has 34 saves in 36 opportunities, including 11 straight. His 94.4 save percentage ranks second in the AL. Conversely, Orioles closer Jim Johnson leads the AL in saves with 47, but has saved just 84 percent of his opportunities.

• Since 2012, the Orioles are 11-5 at home against the Blue Jays, including Tuesday's 3-2 loss. Comments