Globe iconLogin iconRecap iconSearch iconTickets icon

Looking Back: Birdland’s Best Moments So Far 

September 1, 2023

The 2023 Orioles have created plenty of magical moments so far this season, including improbable comebacks, record-breaking performances, and electric walk-offs. With a month left of the regular season, it’s time to look back on some of Birdland’s most memorable moments so far, while looking forward to all that is still to come.

May 12: Cedric Makes a Splash

There was magic in the air when Cedric Mullins stepped up to the plate in the eighth inning on Friday, May 12. All he needed was a home run to become the seventh Oriole in club history to complete the cycle. On the third pitch of the at-bat he sent the ball onto the Flag Court, completing the cycle and etching his name in the history books.

Mullins wasn’t the only Oriole making history that Friday. It was also the debut of Orioles Chief Hydration Officer, Mr. Splash. Located in Section 86, Mr. Splash used a garden hose to spray down fans for all three of Mullins’ extra-base hits that night, giving fans in the Bird Bath a night they will never forget, and beginning one of the best fan experiences in Major League Baseball.

April 11: King of the Castle

Ryan Mountcastle reigned victorious on April 11 against the Oakland Athletics when he became the third player in Orioles history to record nine RBI in a game. Mountcastle already had five RBI before stepping up to the plate in the seventh inning. With the game tied, 7-7, the A's chose to walk Adley Rutschman to load the bases for Mountcastle, a mistake they would soon regret. On the fourth pitch of the at-bat, Mountcastle launched the ball into the left field stands for his second career grand slam, giving the Orioles the lead and recording his ninth RBI of the night. Mountcastle’s historic night put him in great company, joining Orioles Hall of Famer Jim Gentile (5/9/61 at MIN) and Orioles Legend and National Baseball Hall of Famer Eddie Murray (8/26/85 at CAL) as the only players in club history to record nine RBI.

July 28: Tony Taters Strikes Again

The clock struck midnight as Anthony Santander stepped up to the plate in the bottom of the ninth. With the game tied, 0-0, and more than 34,000 fans on their feet, all Santander needed was one swing to send the ball into right field and give the Orioles a 1-0 win over the New York Yankees. His second-career walk-off home run, Santander was met with a Gatorade bath at home plate as the Orioles celebrated their fifth walk-off win and fifth shutout victory of the year.

July 30: Sunday Night Lights

Sunday Night Baseball returned to Baltimore on July 30, and the Orioles put on a show. The O’s scored six runs before recording an out as part of a seven-run first inning, giving them an early lead as they went on to beat the Yankees, 9-3. But the Orioles weren’t just hot at the plate; their pitchers combined to strike out 18 Yankees batters, the most in a nine-inning game in O's history.

July 20: Beasts in the AL East

After Colton Cowser hit a sacrifice fly to score Aaron Hicks and give the Orioles a 4-3 lead, Félix Bautista returned for a second inning in the 10th. With one out in the bottom of the extra frame, Tampa Bay’s Brandon Lowe stepped up to the plate and hit into a game-ending double play, giving the Orioles sole possession of first place in the AL East. If there was anyone who still doubted the comeback kids, they wouldn’t any longer, as the Orioles enjoyed the view from the top.

May 20: The Orioles Make a Statement in Toronto

The Orioles knew they were good. They knew no matter the score, they were never out of it. They proved that on May 20 in Toronto. Down 5-2 in the eighth inning, Ryan O’Hearn clubbed a game-tying, three-run home run off Toronto closer Jordan Romano. Austin Hays plated the game-winning run in the 10th and Félix Bautista worked 2.0 scoreless innings, striking out a career-high five batters. The Orioles always knew they could do it, but this was the moment everyone else started believing they could, too.

July 10-13: An All-Star Week to Remember

For the first time since 2016, the Orioles sent multiple players to the All-Star Game. Félix Bautista, Yennier Cano, Austin Hays, and Adley Rutschman all represented Baltimore at the Midsummer Classic at T-Mobile Park in Seattle.

Rutschman also represented the Orioles in the Home Run Derby. With his dad on the mound, Baltimore’s All-Star backstop put on a show. Rutschman clubbed 20 home runs from the left side in the first three minutes and then surprised everyone when he stepped to the right side of the plate, becoming the first player to ever switch hit at the derby. Seven of his eight swings from the right side resulted in homers, bringing his total to 27 on the unforgettable night.

April 14: Yennier Cano Introduces Himself

After being recalled from Triple-A Norfolk on April 14 and making his season debut later that night, Yennier Cano quickly established himself as one of MLB’s top relievers. Appropriately nicknamed “The Rock,” Cano was nearly unhittable in the early weeks of the season, setting an O’s record with 32 consecutive hitless at-bats to begin his campaign. He did not surrender his first extra-base hit until May 13 vs. Pittsburgh, his 15th appearance of the season. Suffice to say, Cano has not looked back since. His 28 holds this season are tied for the MLB lead and are the most by an O’s hurler in team history (since 1954), per STATS.

August 13: Cedric the Entertainer

You really cannot escape Cedric Mullins, and he proved that again on August 13 in Seattle. Just days after being reinstated from the 10-day Injured List, Mullins became the first player in the last 10 seasons to both rob and hit a home run in the ninth inning or later, per ESPN Stats and Info. First, he made a leaping catch at the wall in the ninth inning to rob Ty France of a game-tying home run. Then, in the 10th, he hit a game-winning, two-run home run to clinch the season series victory. Needless to say, everyone watching was entertained.

August 20: Gunnar Henderson Doesn’t Hit for the Cycle

It was the eighth inning and all Gunnar Henderson needed was a single. If he got it, he would become the eighth player in Orioles history to hit for the cycle. Instead, the frontrunner for AL Rookie of the Year came up to the plate and rocketed a double to right field, settling for four extra-base hits in the game. Despite finishing a single shy of the cycle, Henderson’s performance was historic on its own. According to Sarah Lang of, he posted the 44th individual game in MLB history with multiple doubles, a triple, and a home run, and the first such game since David Wright on June 23, 2013, at Philadelphia, proving once again why he should be the AL Rookie of the Year.

Runner-Up moments:

- Gunnar Henderson’s First Career Grand Slam

- Grayson Rodriguez's MLB Debut

- The Debut of the Homer Hose

- Adley Rutschman Records His First Career Walk-Off

- Kyle Gibson and Aaron Hicks Reach 10 Years of Major League Service Time

- Kyle Gibson 100th Career Win

- Adley Rutschman’s Historic Opening Day