Orioles player to watch: Chris Davis

October, 5, 2012
10/05/12
1:45
PM CT
ARLINGTON, Texas -- Chris Davis stood in the middle of the visiting clubhouse at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington on Thursday and smiled.

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He was happy to be home and happy to be getting a taste of the postseason. He does it as an integral part of the Baltimore Orioles' lineup.

"It's great. I get to sleep in my own bed," Davis said. "I think it helped playing here in August to get all the emotions out, obviously a place I was here for awhile. After being traded, I turned the page."

And his career has turned a corner. Davis has been outstanding this season, finally putting together a complete season instead of just flashes of the power he had in Texas. Davis hit .270 with a team-high 33 homers and 85 RBIs in 139 games. Davis finished with seven homers in the final seven games of the season, including hitting a homer in six straight games.

Davis wasn't going to get an opportunity to see regular playing time, which was part of the reason the trade with Baltimore made so much sense. The Rangers got Koji Uehara, who has been one the club's best relievers the past month and could be in position to pitch in some critical situations tonight and in the postseason. Davis got the chance to make some mistakes and learn from them with regular playing time in Baltimore. And he's taken advantage.

"It’s been a great fit," Davis said. "I think I kind of wore out my welcome in Texas, so to speak. I was doing everything I could to hang on, but after those guys signed (Adrian) Beltre, Mike Napoli, I kind of saw the writing on the wall. I have no hard feelings. I’m very appreciative of the fact they gave me a chance to go play somewhere else."

Davis is certainly a player Yu Darvish will have to watch tonight. He's still prone to the strikeout -- 169 of them this season -- but he can also crush mistakes. It should be fun to see how he does back at the ballpark in a huge game tonight.
Richard Durrett joined ESPNDallas.com in September 2009. He writes about colleges, the Dallas Stars and the Texas Rangers. Richard spent nine years at The Dallas Morning News covering the Rangers, Stars, colleges, motorsports and high schools.

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TEAM LEADERS

WINS LEADER
Yu Darvish
WINS ERA SO IP
9 2.88 154 122
OTHER LEADERS
BAA. Beltre .328
HRA. Beltre 14
RBIA. Beltre 53
RA. Beltre 52
OPSA. Beltre .899
ERAY. Darvish 2.88
SOY. Darvish 154