Consecutive Twofers O's Style

Today’s Twofer Tuesday fell into my lap yesterday as I listened to the Orioles-KC early afternoon make up game.  Somewhere in the pre-game conversation it was noted that May 9th was a special day in Orioles’ history for two reasons.  First off, on 9 May 1961 Jim Gentile hit back-to-back Grand Slams in consecutive innings in one game.  (I have discussed this Twofer feat in a previous post (click here.)   Jim was the first in MLB history to accomplish that.

Secondly, in 1987 Eddie Murray became the first MLB player to hit a home run from each side of the plate as a switch hitter in 2 consecutive games. Eddie had hit switch hit homers in the previous game played on 8 May and then replicated that feat on 9 May.  The irony of Eddie notching these 4 homers in two days is that he had started off that 87 season in a bad slump.  However, true to his nickanme Steady Eddie, he remained calm and poised and eventually broke out of it.

Eddie Murray hits homers from both sides of plate in second straight game | Baseball Hall of Fame

Eddie would eventually eclipse the Mick with 11 switch hit games and hold that record until two ball players Nick Swisher (13) and Mark Teixeira (14) clipped him and his record (click here.)  

I always felt like Eddie, even though he is in baseball’s Hall of Fame, never really got his due just because he was so laid back and of course Cal got a lot of the attention.  Even after Eddie left the Orioles, he had to take a back seat despite having his best year Batting Average-wise hitting for .330.  

It happened in 1990 in his second year after being traded to the Dodgers.  His .330 average was the overall highest that year for all of MLB.  However, because of the following flukey set of circumstances, he did not win the National League batting title.  This from Wiki (click here.)

“He lost the NL batting title to Willie McGee by a narrow margin; McGee had been traded from the St. Louis Cardinals to the Oakland Athletics but had enough plate appearances to qualify for the batting title, hitting .335 to Murray’s .330, though McGee hit .274 with the A’s (making his season average .324), which meant that Murray led the major leagues in batting despite not winning the NL batting title.”

Note too that coincidently, Jim Gentile also had something similar happen to him when he fell one RBI short of winning the RBI title in 1961.  Roger Maris was the official winner that year with one more RBI than Jim.  However, eventually MLB deemed that one of Roger’s RBIs was bogus (click here) and as a result he and Jim actually finished tied for having had the most RBIs.  Since Jim’s 1961 contract contained a $5,000 bonus incentive for winning the RBI contest, some 50 years later the Orioles held a ceremony and awarded Jim his money (click here.)

And as if the above doesn’t already have enough Twofers, it is nice to report that the Orioles beat KC yesterday 6-1 and now head to St Louis on a 2 game winning streak.  They have also won 4 of their last 5 games.  Wishful thinking, but maybe some of the magic is coming back

This song still gets me going everytime I hear it:

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