Battle-tested O's brimming with confidence

Baltimore to face Blue Jays in Wild Card Game on Tuesday in Toronto

Battle-tested O's brimming with confidence

NEW YORK -- Amid the celebration and euphoric yells, the Orioles huddled around the televisions in the Yankees' visiting clubhouse.

Together, the O's took in the conclusion of the Blue Jays-Red Sox game, a meeting that ended with Toronto picking up the victory, sending Baltimore back to Toronto for the second time in less than a week. This time, though, it's all on the line in the American League Wild Card Game (Tuesday on TBS, 8 p.m. ET).

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"This team is battle-tested," Orioles catcher Matt Wieters said after Baltimore's 5-2 win over the Yankees secured a Wild Card berth. "We are ready for whatever gets thrown at us. … We have been through it all, and now it's time to enjoy tonight and get ready for the postseason."

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While the O's spoke still not knowing their fate and cheering on the Red Sox -- whose win would have brought the Wild Card Game to Baltimore -- the events of the past week give the Orioles a lot of faith in themselves.

And for good reason, as they pulled off series wins in Toronto and New York, going 4-2 to close the regular season.

"No, we don't care who we play. We are in it," center fielder Adam Jones said. "We are putting ourselves up for something. It doesn't matter who we play."

Orioles manager Buck Showalter, who said before Sunday's game that the team had a good idea who it would send to the mound in a Wild Card scenario, gave Chris Tillman the nod on Monday.

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What is known is that the Orioles, picked to finish last in the AL East by many in the preseason, will enjoy going into Rogers Centre again as underdogs. Baltimore went 9-10 in the season series against Toronto, including a 4-6 mark on the road.

"Nobody has picked us to do much, and this club always finds a way to compete," executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette said. "We have good internal leadership. And really, we're able to compete because we've got those two young kids in the rotation who came through with great talent, right? [Dylan] Bundy and [Kevin] Gausman. And then Mychal Givens emerged, and [Zach] Britton has the great year that he had.

"And those are all plusses for the organization. Those are players who came through that you couldn't necessarily count on for the roles that they filled on this team. And then to have the veteran pitchers come around like they have the last month of the season, that gives us a good foundation going into the playoffs."

Brittany Ghiroli has covered the Orioles for since 2010. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli, and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.