The Baltimore Orioles appeared on Sunday Night Baseball last night for the first time in years. This in the Little League Classic in Williamsport, PA, where they completed their series against Boston. Dean Kremer got the start for the O’s, and he put the O’s in a spot to win. Kremer’s line: 5.1 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 4 K.
The O’s got on the board early with two RBI-singles. One by Anthony Santander, and an infield single by Ramon Urias. Boston would get on the board in the second when Hernandez smacked an RBI-single of his own.
And Boston did rally, albeit late. Cordero’s solo homer in the eighth inning tied the game at two. But the O’s out a stop to Boston’s rally with one of their own. They loaded the bases in the last of the eighth, bringing Jorge Mateo to the plate. And Mateo cleared the bases with a double, giving the Birds a 5-2 lead.
Boston would get one back on a solo homer by Bogaerts in the ninth, but the Birds closed out a 5-3 win. By winning this game, they not only won the Little League Classic, but they won this three-game series against Boston. Which for the playoff chase, is a huge thing.
The O’s are 2.5 games out of a wild card spot. The league should be thanking them, because one of their annual showcase games had major playoff implications. Who would have thought at the beginning of the season that the O’s/Boston game in Williamsport would have been important for the playoffs, however BECAUSE of the Orioles?!
And I think that this Little League Classic game is a great thing. It’s a little strenuous on the players because you force two teams to travel to Williamsport, PA during a series and play a game on Sunday Night. However I think it’s a great way of embracing the game at it’s core, and embracing youth. And make no mistake that a national audience got to see the showcasing of a franchise that’s turned a corner, and is going to be a huge part of the immediate future of baseball in terms of wins and losses.