Globe iconLogin iconRecap iconSearch iconTickets icon
news

MLB News

Remembering Machado's top Orioles moments

MLB.com

The Manny Machado era in Baltimore has come to an end. With the blockbuster trade that sends the shortstop to the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Orioles receiving no. 84 prospect outfielder Yusniel Diaz (as well as third baseman Rylan Bannon, right-hander Dean Kremer, righty Zach Pop and second baseman Breyvic Valera), arguably the biggest star to pass through the organization moves on, taking with him the electrifying highlights he provided Orioles fans on a seemingly nightly basis.

Machado has earned his space on highlight reels with both sides of his game, bringing Camden Yards to its feet with powerful swings of the bat and dropping jaws with masterful use of the glove along with an incredible show of the arm. Machado made his debut for the Orioles at the tender age of 19 and was tasked with adapting to the Majors -- on top of maturing as a person -- in front of everybody's eyes on the biggest stage. The homegrown talent won a place in the heart of nearly every fan of the black and orange, and then some.

The Manny Machado era in Baltimore has come to an end. With the blockbuster trade that sends the shortstop to the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Orioles receiving no. 84 prospect outfielder Yusniel Diaz (as well as third baseman Rylan Bannon, right-hander Dean Kremer, righty Zach Pop and second baseman Breyvic Valera), arguably the biggest star to pass through the organization moves on, taking with him the electrifying highlights he provided Orioles fans on a seemingly nightly basis.

Machado has earned his space on highlight reels with both sides of his game, bringing Camden Yards to its feet with powerful swings of the bat and dropping jaws with masterful use of the glove along with an incredible show of the arm. Machado made his debut for the Orioles at the tender age of 19 and was tasked with adapting to the Majors -- on top of maturing as a person -- in front of everybody's eyes on the biggest stage. The homegrown talent won a place in the heart of nearly every fan of the black and orange, and then some.

Here is just a taste of some of the excitement Machado brought to baseball in Baltimore.

Triple for first hit
Baltimore fans did not need to wait long for proof that the No. 3 overall pick from the 2010 Draft was worth the wait. In his second career plate appearance, Machado, 19 at the time, muscled a curveball the opposite way for a hustle triple and his first career hit. He would triple twice more in his remaining 50 games of 2012, which still stands as his career-high for triples in a season (three).

Video: KC@BAL: Machado triples for his first big league hit

First two career home runs
As if the triple for his first hit wasn't enough to impress, Machado launched his first career home runs in back-to-back at-bats the very next day. The first of which was a solo homer to give Baltimore some breathing room against the eventual Royals, while the second was a three-run blast that blew the game wide open. It was a peek at the untamed power Machado would bring in his 162 home runs as an Oriole.

Video: Must C Classic: Machado rips first two ML homers

Adapting quickly to playing the hot corner
Machado was drafted as a shortstop, and despite moving back to the position in 2018, he made himself a nightly highlight reel at third base. With J.J. Hardy holding a lock on short at the Major League level, Machado was given just two games playing third in the Minors before he made his first Major League start on the hot corner.

But he didn't just hold his own at third -- he thrilled. And no play has been more iconic than faking a throw to first before turning around to chase down Rich Thompson trying to take home on the play. Orioles fans were introduced to his brawn on the diamond and genius as a player.

Video: Must C Caught: Machado fakes throw, catches Thompson

From bobbled ball to incredible play
While Machado is a two-time Gold Glove winner, perhaps his most impressive defensive play came only after a mistake. After bobbling a bouncing ground ball down the third-base line, Machado recovered just before the warning track and fired a bullet across the diamond to throw out New York's Luis Cruz.

It was in the midst of a string of countless web gems from Machado, who went on to win his first of the two Gold Gloves in that 2013 season thanks to plays like that of July 7.

Video: BAL@NYY: Machado shows off strong arm for great play

Return to form amid injury-riddled 2014
The 2013 season ended in a gut-punch for Machado and the Orioles, with the former suffering a season-ending left kneecap injury while legging out an infield single with just six games left in the year. The 2014 campaign -- which was prematurely ended yet again by another knee injury -- didn't allow Machado to play out a full season, but he gave fans enough highlights to seem like he did.

A pair of such moments came a year removed from the iconic warning track throw against the Yankees, which Machado did it again in 2014 -- twice in a game. He robbed Albert Pujols of two sure hits with a combination of his glove and arm in foul territory.

Video: Machado robs Pujols in two straight games

First career walk-off home run
Machado continued his jaw-dropping play in the late-July series against the Angels with his first career walk-off home run on July 29. With Cory Rasmus -- brother of Machado's 2018 teammate Colby Rasmus -- on the mound, Machado launched a 1-2 curveball deep to left in the 12th inning for his first career walk-off homer.

It was yet another shortened season for Machado, bookended by knee injuries. What's worse, it was the Orioles' first American League East title in since 1997 -- and only one of the Machado era -- and the superstar was not able to participate in the postseason.

Video: LAA@BAL: Machado belts a walk-off homer in the 12th

Home Run Derby in 2015
The 2015 season was the first non-winning season for the Orioles in the Machado era, as the team finished 81-81 in third place in the AL East. But it was the best individual season for Machado, as he was finally able to play 162 games and finished fourth in MVP voting -- the highest result of his career so far.

He also participated in the Home Run Derby for the first time of his career, and despite getting edged out by eventual-runner-up Joc Pederson in the first round, he represented Baltimore on the national stage at All-Star Week along with Zach Britton, Adam Jones and Darren O'Day.

Video: HRD Rd 1: Machado hits 12 homers in first round

Two grand slams in less than two weeks
Most Major Leaguers go their whole career never hitting a grand slam. Machado did so twice in the span of 10 days, in April-May 2016. The first made it a 10-2 game against the White Sox; the second was done with a pink bat on Mother's Day to make it 11-3 against Oakland. Both were reminders of the pop of Machado's bat that can come any instant.

Video: CWS@BAL: Machado belts a grand slam to left-center

Video: OAK@BAL: Machado launches a grand slam

Powerful response in feud with Red Sox
When Dustin Pedroia left an April 21 loss to Baltimore last season due to injury after a slide from Machado, the Oriole was forced to play the rest of the 2017 season against Boston with an 'X' on his back. Several times he was thrown at or yelled at by the Fenway faithful or Red Sox players themselves.

Machado responded with some of his best baseball of the 2017 season, which included homers off Chris Sale and David Price along with fantastic defensive plays. In 18 games against the Red Sox in 2017, Machado hit six home runs and five doubles to go along with 13 RBIs.

"If they keep poking Manny, he's going to have about 100 home runs," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said at the time.

Video: BAL@BOS: Machado thrown at in 1st, homers in 7th

Three-homer performance, capped off by walk-off grand slam
Machado went long multiple times in a game on 19 occasions for the Orioles. One of his two three-homer performances came on Aug. 18 of last year for one of his most memorable single-game performances at the plate. Machado ended a back-and-forth affair with the Angels with a swing of the bat in the ninth inning, sending an 0-1 fastball to straightaway center field for yet another grand slam. It came after a solo shot and two-run homer earlier in the game.

Video: LAA@BAL: Machado launches three homers, walk-off slam

A feat for all the World to see
One of the most memorable moments for Machado came outside of wearing an Orioles uniform. Facing elimination in the second round of the 2017 World Baseball Classic, Machado's Dominican Republic team was down 4-2 in the seventh inning against the United States when the slugger stepped up to the plate. Machado rocketed a line drive to deep center, but Jones seemingly came from nowhere to rob his Oriole teammate of a crucial homer. All Machado could do was tip his cap to his long-time teammate as his home run trot took a sharp turn to the dugout.

"It was one of the best catches I've ever seen him make or ever seen being made," Machado said at the time. "Unfortunately he robbed me, but better him than somebody else."

Video: Must C Catch: Jones robs homer, Machado tips his cap

Zachary Silver is a reporter for MLB.com based in Baltimore. Follow him on Twitter at @zachsilver.

Baltimore Orioles, Manny Machado