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1996 Baltimore Orioles season

 

1996 Baltimore Orioles season

The 1996 Baltimore Orioles season in which the Orioles finishing 2nd in the American League East with a record of 88 wins and 74 losses and qualifying for the post-season as the Wild Card team. The Orioles broke the all-time record for most home runs hit by a team (set at 240 by the 1961 New York Yankees) with 257. During the season, four Orioles scored at least 100 runs, four drove in at least 100 runs and seven hit at least 20 home runs. The Orioles pitching staff allowed 209 home runs, 1,604 hits and had an ERA of 5.15. The Orioles defeated the Cleveland Indians in the ALDS and then lost in the ALCS to the New York Yankees.

Offseason

Regular season

  • On September 27 in Toronto, Roberto Alomar spat at home-plate umpire John Hirschbeck after getting thrown out of a game for arguing a called third strike.[6]

Opening Day starters

Notable transactions

  • April 19, 1996: Luis Polonia was signed as a free agent with the Baltimore Orioles.[8]
  • June 6, 1996: Todd Frohwirth was signed as a free agent with the Baltimore Orioles.[9]
  • August 12, 1996: Luis Polonia was released by the Baltimore Orioles.[8]
  • August 23, 1996: Gregg Zaun was sent by the Baltimore Orioles to the Florida Marlins to complete an earlier deal made on August 21, 1996. The Baltimore Orioles sent a player to be named later to the Florida Marlins for Terry Mathews. The Baltimore Orioles sent Gregg Zaun (August 23, 1996) to the Florida Marlins to complete the trade.[10]

Season standings

AL East W L Pct. GB
New York Yankees 92 70 .568    --
Baltimore Orioles * 88 74 .543   4.0
Boston Red Sox 85 77 .525   7.0
Toronto Blue Jays 74 88 .457 18.0
Detroit Tigers 53 109 .327 39.0


Roster

1996 Baltimore Orioles
Roster
Pitchers Catchers

Infielders

Outfielders

Other batters

Manager

Coaches

Player stats

= Indicates team leader

Batting

Note: G = Games played; AB = At Bats; H = Hits; Avg. = Batting Average; HR = Home Runs; RBI = Runs Batted In

Player G AB H HR RBI Avg.
Chris Hoiles 127 407 105 25 73 .258
Rafael Palmiero 162 626 181 39 142 .289
Roberto Alomar 153 588 193 22 94 .328
B.J. Surhoff 143 537 157 21 82 .292
Cal Ripken, Jr. 163 640 178 26 102 .278
Jeffrey Hammonds 71 248 56 9 27 .226
Brady Anderson 149 579 172 50 110 .297
Bobby Bonilla 159 595 171 28 116 .287
Eddie Murray 64 230 59 10 34 .257
[11]

Other batters

Player G AB H HR RBI Avg.
Mike Devereaux 127 323 74 8 34 .229
Luis Polonia 58 175 42 2 14 .240
Billy Ripken 57 135 31 2 12 .230
Todd Zeile 29 117 28 5 19 .239
Gregg Zaun 50 108 25 1 13 .231
Tony Tarasco 31 84 20 1 9 .238
Mark Smith 27 78 19 4 10 .244
Manny Alexander 54 68 7 0 4 .103
Brent Bowers 21 39 12 0 3 .308
Pete Incaviglia 12 33 10 2 8 .303
Mark Parent 18 33 6 2 6 .182
Jeff Huson 17 28 9 0 2 .321
Cesar Devarez 10 18 2 0 0 .111
Gene Kingsale 3 0 0 0 0 .000
[11]

Pitching

Position Name Games Pitched Games Started ERA Wins Losses Saves Innings Pitched Strikeouts
Starting Pitchers
Mike Mussina [12] 36 36 4.81 19 11 0 243.3 204
Scott Erickson [13] 34 34 5.02 13 12 0 222.3 100
David Wells [14] 34 34 5.14 11 14 0 224.3 130
Rocky Copinger [15] 23 22 5.18 10 6 0 135 104
Kent Mercker [16] 14 12 7.76 3 6 0 58 22
Relief Pitcher
Jesse Orosco [17] 66 0 3.40 3 1 0 55.7 52
Roger McDowell[18] 41 0 4.25 1 1 0 59.3 20
Arthur Rhodes [19] 28 0 4.08 9 1 0 53 62
Alan Mills [20] 49 0 4.28 3 2 0 54.7 52
Archie Corbin [21] 18 0 2.30 2 0 0 27.3 20
Keith Shepperd [22] 13 0 8.71 0 1 0 20.7 17
Terry Mathews [23] 14 0 3.38 2 2 0 18.7 13
Armando Benítez [24] 18 0 3.77 1 0 0 14.3 20
Jimmy Myers [25] 11 0 7.07 0 0 0 14 6
Esteban Yan [26] 4 0 5.79 0 0 0 9.3 7
Mike Milchin [27] 13 0 5.73 1 0 0 11 10
Garrett Stephenson [27] 3 0 12.79 0 1 0 6.3 3
Brian Sackinsky [28] 3 0 3.86 0 0 0 4.7 2
Jimmy Haynes [29] 26 11 8.29 3 6 0 89 65
Rick Krivda [30] 22 11 4.96 3 5 0 81.7 54
Nerio Rodríguez [31] 8 1 4.32 0 1 0 16.7 12
Closer
Randy Myers [2] 62 0 3.53 4 4 31 58.7 74

[11]

Return of Eddie Murray

On July 21, 1996 the Baltimore Orioles re-acquired longtime Oriole Eddie Murray from the Cleveland Indians in exchange for pitcher Kent Mercker.[32] Murray, a member of the 1983 World Series Champion Baltimore Orioles, would subsequently hit his 500th career home run later in the season. As a commemoration of this event, an orange seat was installed in the outfield stands where Murray's 500th home run landed. The Orioles had a record of 49 wins and 46 losses before the trade, and 39–28 after the trade, not including the playoffs. During the 1996 playoffs, Eddie Murray hit .333 and hit HR while producing 3 home runs.

The trade for Eddie Murray sparked the Orioles to have a better record after his arrival, than before. One can attribute that to his great leadership, which is well documented, as a Sporting News correspondent, Michael P. Geffner said, "To think of Murray as anything other than a great player these days is not to have a dissenting opinion anymore but to be dead wrong, blind not only to the inner game but to an understanding of what truly raises baseball to something classic and beautiful--when the game is executed purely and seamlessly. Which is Eddie Murray to a T.".[33] The Orioles success after the trade can also be attributed to the theory of "Power, worth, and recognition,[34] " which Thomas S. Parish who is an associate professor of psychology at Upper Iowa University, Fayette, Iowa describes as a type of motivation where athletes attempt to out do or "show off" to each other, which leads to better statistics, and more wins. In Eddie Murray's last at-bat with the Orioles he hit a home run off of New York Yankee pitcher, Andy Pettitte.

ALDS

Game 1, October 1

Oriole Park at Camden Yards, Baltimore, Maryland

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Cleveland 0 1 0 2 0 0 1 0 0 4 10 0
Baltimore 1 1 2 0 0 5 1 0 X 10 10 1
WP: David Wells (1-0)   LP: Charles Nagy (0-1)
Home runs:
Cle: Manny Ramírez (1)
Bal: Brady Anderson (1), B.J. Surhoff (1, 2), Bobby Bonilla (1)

Game 2, October 2

Oriole Park at Camden Yards, Baltimore, Maryland

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Cleveland 0 0 0 0 0 3 0 1 0 4 8 2
Baltimore 1 0 0 0 3 0 0 3 X 7 9 0
WP: Armando Benítez (1-0)   LP: Eric Plunk (0-1)   Sv: Randy Myers (1)
Home runs:
Cle: Albert Belle (1)
Bal: Brady Anderson (2)

Game 3, October 4

Jacobs Field, Cleveland, Ohio

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Baltimore 0 1 0 3 0 0 0 0 0 4 8 2
Cleveland 1 2 0 1 0 0 4 1 X 9 10 0
WP: Paul Assenmacher (1-0)   LP: Jesse Orosco (0-1)
Home runs:
Bal: B.J. Surhoff (3)
Cle: Manny Ramírez (2), Albert Belle (2)

Game 4, October 5

Jacobs Field, Cleveland, Ohio

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 R H E
Baltimore 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 4 14 1
Cleveland 0 0 0 2 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 7 1
WP: Armando Benítez (2-0)   LP: José Mesa (0-1)   Sv: Randy Myers (2)
Home runs:
Bal: Rafael Palmeiro (1), Bobby Bonilla (2), Roberto Alomar (1)
Cle: None

ALCS

Game Score Date
1 Baltimore 4, New York 5 October 9
2 Baltimore 5, New York 3 October 10
3 New York 5, Baltimore 2 October 11
4 New York 8, Baltimore 4 October 12
5 New York 6, Baltimore 4 October 13

Jeffrey Maier incident

During Game 1 of the ALCS, New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter hit a deep fly ball to right field. Orioles outfielder Tony Tarasco appeared to camp under the ball and prepared to make a catch. However, a 12-year-old boy seated in the first row of the bleachers named Jeffrey Maier reached over the wall and caught the ball just above Tarrasco, costing the Orioles an out. Although it appeared to be fan interference, the umpire ruled the ball to be a home run. While Maier became a hero to Yankees fans, he immediately became a "symbol of the Orioles futility."[35] To this day, Orioles fans wonder what the 1996 team could have accomplished had no one interfered with the ball.

Farm system

Level Team League Manager
AAA Rochester Red Wings International League Marv Foley
AA Bowie Baysox Eastern League Bob Miscik and Tim Blackwell
A High Desert Mavericks California League Joe Ferguson
A Frederick Keys Carolina League Tim Blackwell and Julio Garcia
Rookie Bluefield Orioles Appalachian League Bobby Dickerson
Rookie GCL Orioles Gulf Coast League Tommy Shields
LEAGUE CHAMPIONS: Bluefield[36]

References

  • 1996 Baltimore Orioles team page at Baseball Reference
  • 1996 Baltimore Orioles season at baseball-almanac.com
Preceded by
New York Yankees
1995
AL Wild Card
1996
Succeeded by
New York Yankees
1997
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