What was on Tommy Hunter’s hat? And other facts from the win
The Orioles just finished a marathon 18-inning win -you can read about it here –over the Seattle Mariners, the kind of victory that had even typically-stoic manager Buck Showalter pretty poetic.
“You’d be real picky to not find something to be proud of in that game,” Showalter said after the team’s longest game this season put them in a first-place tie in the AL East with the Yankees. “Just when I think they can’t top something, they do.”
And what was on top of reliever Tommy Hunter’s hat? One of the seagulls that flocked around Safeco Field late tonight decided to relieve itself on Hunter’s hat, and the always quotable Hunter — who tossed two scoreless innings to pick up the win — told the story to the few reporters still around.
“I was minding my own business, not doing anything,” Hunter said. “I thought it was [Luis] Ayala throwing stuff at me. You know, he usually does. So I didn’t know what it was. I just thought someone threw a piece of gum and hit me. It wasn’t a piece of gum, man. Everybody just started dying laughing. Then everybody said it was good luck. Then we won.”
The bird had some pretty good timing, getting Hunter while he was warming up in the bullpen.
“It went [plop] and I looked at it and everyone started laughing,” Hunter said. “I had bird [droppings] on my head…I love it. It’s my favorite hat. It sucks. It’s terrible. I don’t even know where it is, but it’s going somewhere. It [went to the bathroom] on my head.”
Asked why he didn’t grab another hat before heading out to the mound for the bottom of the 17th, Hunter said: “I have 7 5/8’s. I got a huge dome. A large landing zone, I guess. I don’t know. That was wild. I’ve never been [gone to the bathroom] on before…But, no it was fun. Good game, good team won. It’s something we’ve done time and time again, just thankful we ended it in the 18th. Because I don’t know if we had any more arms out there.”
A few facts from tonight’s game…
*The Orioles have won 14 consecutive extra-innings contests, the longest extra-innings win streak since the 1949 Cleveland Indians won 19 straight.
*The bullpen tossed nine scoreless innings in extras and has a 0/82 ERA i extra innings this season, allowing five earned runs over 55 innings.
*The Orioles have played more than 14 innings five times this season and are a perfect 5-0 in those games. Tuesday’s win marked the fifth game in team history that was 18 or more innings, the first since August 25, 1969 vs. the Boston Red Sox.
*The Orioles now have won seven consecutive games over the Mariners and have an American League-leading 42 road wins.