Orioles Card "O" the Day

An intersection of two of my passions: baseball cards and the Baltimore Orioles. Updated daily?

Thursday, September 25, 2014

B. J. Surhoff, 1996 Score Select #133

In exactly one week, I will be at Oriole Park at Camden Yards, watching Chris Tillman and the Orioles do their best to win the first game of the American League Division Series. Their opponent is not set in stone yet, but it's probably going to be the Detroit Tigers. Until then, I'll try to wait patiently.

One thing I can do to pass the time is search the video library on MLB.com. A few nights ago, I went searching for 1990s Orioles highlights. There were a few clips from Game One of the 1996 ALDS, the first postseason game in Baltimore in 13 years and the first ever at Camden Yards. It's a nice glimpse of the exciting atmosphere, and it should rekindle some warm memories for O's fans.

The Wild Card-winning Birds outslugged the Indians 10-4, adding four home runs to their record-setting regular season total of 257. Brady Anderson kept up his improbable season with a leadoff home run off of Charles Nagy in the bottom of the first, only for Manny Ramirez to answer with his on leadoff blast against David Wells in the next half-inning. B. J. Surhoff's rebuttal came in the bottom of the second, a go-ahead solo shot to right-center field. The Orioles kept up the pressure in the third inning, with Rafael Palmeiro and Cal Ripken each adding a run-scoring hit. Wells gave both runs right back, and then things cooled off for a few innings.

In the bottom of the sixth, Baltimore chased Nagy with two walks sandwiched around a single. Alan Embree came out of the Tribe bullpen and got Roberto Alomar to hit a shallow fly ball for the second out, but Chris Hoiles tagged and scored the fifth run for the home team. Embree plunked Palmeiro to re-load the bases and gave way to Paul Shuey. Bobby Bonilla worked the count full and then launched Shuey's sixth pitch onto the flag court for a game-breaking grand slam. The Indians pushed across a single run in their next at-bat to end Wells' day, but the O's bullpen wriggled out of further trouble. Terry Mathews, of all people, coaxed an inning-ending groundout from Albert Belle with runners on second and third. Surhoff capped the scoring after the seventh-inning stretch with his second homer of the game, another solo shot. Randy Myers closed out the game with a stress-free perfect ninth inning, and the Orioles were on their way to a surprising four-game series win over the defending American League champs.

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