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Behind Matt Wieters’ power, Orioles top Yankees and clinch Wild Card berth

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Orioles catcher Matt Wieters blasted a pair of two-run home runs, helping his team take down the Yankees 5-2 on Sunday afternoon. The win clinched a Wild Card berth for the O’s, who entered Sunday’s action tied with the division rival Blue Jays at 88-73.

J.J. Hardy opened the scoring in the third inning with a sacrifice fly against Yankees starter Luis Cessa. Wieters blasted his first two-run homer in the fourth. Brian McCann put the Yankees on the board in the bottom half of the fourth with a solo homer off of Orioles starter Kevin Gausman. Wieters went yard again in the sixth inning, this time off of lefty reliever Tommy Lane. In doing so, the switch-hitting Wieters homered from both sides of the plate. He’s the first Oriole to accomplish that feat since Roberto Alomar on July 25, 1996, per the Orioles’ Twitter.

Gausman got one out in the eighth and left after allowing a single to Gary Sanchez. Closer Zach Britton came in and allowed a single to Brian McCann, followed by a two-out single from Didi Gregorius, allowing an inherited runner to score. Britton was able to get Aaron Hicks to ground out to end the inning, however. The lefty came back out for the ninth, striking out Ronald Torreyes, getting Billy Butler to ground out, and then striking out Brett Gardner to end the game.

The Orioles will face either the Blue Jays or Tigers in the Wild Card game. Both teams will finish their games shortly.

Phillies COVID testing reports no new positives

Phillies COVID testing
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Phillies COVID testing results revealed no new positives for the fourth straight day, the team announced this morning. As a result, they will resume their schedule tonight against the Yankees.

It’ll be the first game for the Phillies since last Sunday’s game against the Marlins. The Miami outbreak prompted the Phillies’ season to be shut down, but the lack of positive tests beyond team staff that had more direct contact with the visiting Marlins is an encouraging sign. The Phillies COVID testing strongly suggests that cross-team infection from on-the-field activity is not a significant problem. This could bode well for, say, the Brewers, who have been idled a few days due to the outbreak emerging on their would-be opponents this past weekend, the St. Louis Cardinals.

All of this, of course, puts the Phillies well behind their usual schedule. They’ve played just three games and have had minimal baseball activity in the past eight days. Whether that shows up in the performances of Jake Arrieta and Aaron Nola, tonight and tomorrow night’s starters, respectively, will be worth watching.

All in all, though, the Phillies COVID testing results are good news. And folks, we could use some good news right now.

UPDATE: The Marlins are negative too: