I want to begin by congratulating the Orioles on their fine selection of Matt Taylor in the fifth round of the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft with the 155th pick. I don’t know a thing about Taylor other than the fact that we share the same name, so I fully support the move and look forward to his first T-Shirt Tuesday at Camden Yards.
And while I’m handing out plaudits, here’s to Luke Scott for taking over sole possession as the career leader in Eutaw Street home runs. Scott’s estimated 418-foot blast in the fifth inning off Guillermo Moscoso was his sixth Eutaw Street homer breaking a tie with Rafael Palmeiro atop the leaderboard for what I like to call “bronze bombs.” Both Scott and Palmeiro hit their Eutaw Street home runs in four seasons of work.
Wednesday night’s longball was Scott’s third-longest Eutaw Street home run. His homer against Josh Beckett earlier this season traveled 426 feet, much to the feisty right-hander’s chagrin, while his homer off Freddy Dolsi in 2008 went 420 feet. Overall, the six baseballs he’s deposited on Eutaw Street have traveled a combined 2,485 feet.
The latest effort was Scott’s first Eutaw Street home run against an American League West opponent, which means he’s hit for the A.L. Eutaw Street cycle -- one homer against an opponent from each division as well as both the Red Sox and Yankees. His previous efforts came against the likes of Beckett (Red Sox), A.J. Burnett (Yankees), Ricky Romero (Blue Jays), Fausto Carmona (Indians), and Dolsi (Tigers).
It should come as no surprise to Orioles fans that Scott has hit his Eutaw Street homers in bunches. He last reached Eutaw Street on April 27, making this the third season in which he has had multiple Eutaw Street home runs - 2008 and 2009 are the others. No batter reached Eutaw Street in 2010, which had happened only once before in 1993.
Scott has hit the last four Eutaw Street home runs, the longest streak of any player. The last player not named Scott to reach Eutaw Street was Adam Dunn, who placed a David Hernandez offering 442 feet from home plate, hitting the Warehouse on a bounce. Dunn’s blast was one foot short of the longest Eutaw Street home run in Camden Yards history; Henry Rodriguez hit a 443-foot homer on June 17, 1997. Rodriguez played for the Montreal Expos, who moved to Washington and became the Nationals, the team Dunn was playing for when he went deep.
Finally, a point of hometown pride. The Orioles have hit seven of the last nine Eutaw Street home runs, which, given the history, is no small thing despite the obvious home-field advantage providing more opportunities to do so.
Four different opponents (Tigers, Rangers, Angels, Mariners) reached Eutaw Street before the Orioles did it for the first time (Kevin Bass on June 8, 1995). Also, the Birds have never had more than four consecutive Eutaw Street home runs without interruption by a visiting team. The previous streak took place from Aug. 14, 1996, through April 11, 1997, when Eddie Murray, Bobby Bonilla and Palmeiro (twice) did the O’s longball bidding. Scott has matched that streak all by himself.
You can read more about Eutaw Street home runs on my blog in the The Eutaw Street Chronicles section.
Matthew Taylor blogs about the Orioles at Roar from 34. His ruminations about the Birds will appear this week as part of MASNsports.com’s season-long initiative of welcoming guest bloggers to our site. All opinions expressed are those of the guest bloggers, who are not employed by MASNsports.com but are just as passionate about their baseball as our roster of writers.