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2012 MLB Playoffs: Buck Showalter, O's eliminated by Yankees, Cards stun Nationals

CC Sabathia dominated the Orioles as the Yankees advanced to the ALCS and the St. Louis Cardinals staged an all-time comeback to advance over the Washington Nationals.

The Star-Ledger-US PRESSWIRE - Presswire

Both the American and National League Championship series are set after a pair of close games on Friday. CC Sabathia was dominant as the New York Yankees beat the Baltimore Orioles, 3-1, in the ALDS and in the National League the St. Louis Cardinals came back to stun the Washington Nationals, 9-7.

In New York, Buck Showalter and the Orioles could never really get much going against Sabathia. The Yankees' ace threw a complete game, giving up only four hits while striking out nine Baltimore hitters. Former Diamondback Mark Reynolds' playoff struggles continued as he went 0-for-3, striking out twice and grounding into a double play. New York got RBI from Raul Ibanez, Ichiro Suzuki and Curtis Granderson to take the series and advance to the ALCS.

In Game 5 of the NLDS between Washington and St. Louis, it looked like the reigning champion Cardinals were headed for defeat when the Nationals jumped out to a 6-0 lead in the first three innings. Instead, St. Louis mounted a comeback to keep their title defense alive.

Washington led, 7-5 going into the ninth inning before a two-run single by St. Louis' Daniel Descalso tied the game and a two-run single by Pete Kozma put the Cardinals ahead, 9-7.

The Cardinals will meet the San Francisco Giants in a National League Championship Series that pits the last two World Series winners against one another. The American League Championship Series will feature New York against the Detroit Tigers.