“Orioles Classics” #TBT: Extra excitement in extra innings

Just one more month to go. Hold on.

Waiting out the winter can be tough on a baseball fan. T.S. Eliot called April “the cruelest month,” but we all know that that distinction belongs to January. It seems like forever since we enjoyed a game at Camden Yards on a sweltering night or watched the Orioles live on MASN in our shorts with a cold one at the ready.

But we’re halfway through the month now, and this time next month, Sarasota will be stirring as spring training gets rolling. Meanwhile, MASN can tide you over with rebroadcasts of games of note from seasons past.

We freely dispense free baseball in a week’s worth of “Orioles Classics” in which you’ll see not just one, but two 13-inning games. You’ll also witness the birth of a big league superstar and an O’s victory over the Yankees. That ought to keep you warm for a while.

Thursday, Jan. 17, 1 p.m. - Matt Wieters gave the Birds a late lead in a tight ballgame that decided a three-game series with the Washington Nationals at Oriole Park on Sunday, June 24, 2012. With the O’s trailing 1-0, Adam Jones led off in the bottom of the eighth with an opposite-field single, bringing Wieters to the dish to bat right-handed against Nats reliever Sean Burnett. The Orioles catcher took Burnett’s second pitch over the fence in left-center to plate the tying and go-ahead runs. Jim Johnson scored a save with a 1-2-3 ninth and Pedro Strop got the win.

Sunday, Jan. 20, 1 p.m. - If you like a slugfest, you won’t want to miss our rebroadcast of the veritable “Rocky” movie that took place at Detroit’s Comerica Park on May 16, 2017. After the Tigers touched O’s lefty Wade Miley for a run in the first, the Birds chased Detroit starter Matt Boyd in the middle of a seven-run third inning. But this one was far from over. The Tigers got three of those runs back on a two-run homer from Victor Martinez and a solo shot from J.D. Martinez, who went on to hit a grand slam in the seventh to put the home team back in front. With the O’s facing a heartbreaking loss with two out in the ninth, Mark Trumbo homered to tie the score. The Orioles plated three runs in the 12th to take an 11-8 lead. That oughta do it, right? Nah, the Tigers got ‘em right back in the bottom half as O’s reliver Donnie Hart struggled. In the 13th, though, Chris Davis’ second home run of the contest put the Orioles in front for good. Final score: Orioles 13, Tigers 11. Whew!

Tuesday, Jan. 22, 9 a.m. - In the first of four with the A’s - a series the Orioles would sweep, winning the first two games with walk-offs - Manny Machado dealt the death blow with a two-run homer in the 13th, giving the O’s an 8-6 victory on Aug. 14, 2015. Davis and Jones also went deep, in back-to-back at-bats. Jones recorded four RBIs on the night. Jason García induced ground balls from each of the three batters he faced in the top of the 13th to earn his first and only win in the big leagues.

Tuesday, Jan. 22, 7 p.m. - With the Orioles headed for a showdown with the Blue Jays in the 2016 American League wild card play-in, skipper Buck Showalter hoped on the last day of the regular season to get some innings out of his starter and give his bullpen ample rest. Kevin Gausman obliged, bending but not breaking in a 7 1/3-inning, two-run, eight-hit performance that helped the Orioles put away the Yankees 5-2. Wieters had a pair of two-run homers in the win.

Wednesday, Jan. 23, 1:30 p.m. - Machado made it apparent early on in his career that he would be a force in the big leagues. In just his second major league game, the rookie homered twice as the Orioles pounded the Royals 7-1 on Aug. 10, 2012. Having just made the jump from Double-A Bowie to the bigs, the 20-year-old played third base and batted eighth in the O’s lineup that day. Their No. 9 hitter, second baseman Omar Quintanilla, hit a two-run dinger in the second to put the Birds ahead 2-1. Machado’s first major league home run leading off the fifth made it 3-1. Then in the sixth, after Nate McLouth’s two-run double, Machado homered again to put the game out of reach. The O’s got eight strong innings from Miguel González and Strop sewed up the win for him with a 1-2-3 ninth.

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