Globe iconLogin iconRecap iconSearch iconTickets icon

Winter promise leads to spring fling

20 years after throwing the first-ever pitch at Camden Yards, Rick Sutcliffe returned to Baltimore for Opening Day.

And that first pitch back in 1992 almost did not happen. Late Orioles manager Johnny Oates had lured Sutcliffe by bringing him to Oriole Park during the final stages of construction. With no one else in the ballpark, the two walked to the mound and Oates told Sutcliffe he would throw the first pitch in baseball's new cathedral.

"I said, 'Johnny I don't want to hear another word. Go in there and get the deal done. I'll see you back here on Opening Day.'"