The Baltimore Orioles' outstanding bullpen is a big reason they're vying for the AL East lead. And Jim Johnson is the biggest reason for the success of that bullpen.
Johnson set a franchise record with his major league-leading 46th save and the Orioles beat the Boston Red Sox 4-2 on Friday night to remain one game behind the first-place New York Yankees.
The record means ''that we're winning and we're having a good season,'' he said. ''That's all it really means right now.''
Baltimore closers hadn't had much of a shot at the record of 45 set by Randy Myers in 1997, the last time the Orioles finished the season with a winning record. They had no more than 69 wins in any of the last four years. But now they're 86-64 with 12 games left.
''When you talk about the history of the Orioles, you've got everybody's attention. That's pretty long and deep,'' manager Buck Showalter said of Johnson's record, but ''Jimmy's got other goals in mind.''
Those goals are winning playoff games and t...