Davis homers twice in possible farewell
BALTIMORE— Chris Davis, honored Sunday afternoon as the Most Valuable Oriole, put a memorable end to what could be his final game with Baltimore.
Davis— who already started the day leading the Major Leagues in homers— hit two more to push the number to 47 and send the crowd into several standing ovations in the Orioles 9-4 sweep over the Yankees.
“That’s a little too apropos, the last one. As it left the ballpark, I just went, ‘Really?’,” Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. “To put an exclamation point on the quality of contributions he’s had. It’s been fun to have a great seat to watch him. He’s been very good for our city. He’s really established himself here in Baltimore. I felt very honored to be part of that. It’s never goodbye, it’s see you later. That’s the way I always approach the end of the year.”
Still Davis —who ends the year with 117 RBIs and will be one of the most sought-after hitters on the market— acknowledged it wasn’t just any regular end of the season.
“Driving in today [it hit me],“ Davis said. “I said: ‘Man, this might be the last time I’m making this drive.’ Just times throughout the day, I wasn’t trying to dwell on it. When I was walking down the tunnel, that hit me hard. I actually asked Matt [Wieters] before the game started, I said, ‘is it starting to get to you a little bit? [He said] yeah. When I was walking down the tunnel, I thought it might be the last time I do this. Hopefully, it’s not.”
Davis’ first blast, a two-run shot in the fifth inning which came off of Yankees’ Bryan Mitchell put the O’s up 7-1. He also doubled in the first and walked before taking his final at-bat in the bottom of the eighth. Yankees manager Joe Girardi made a pitching change, subbing Caleb Cotham for Andrew Miller, and Davis blasted a 0-1 pitch into right field to send the crowd to its feet.
While the O’s faithful were denied a curtain call, they gave Davis another ovation as he jogged out to first base in the top of the ninth inning and chanted “Re-sign Davis” during his interview by the first base dugout.
“I can’t express how much I appreciate the support of our fans,” Davis said. “Really the last month, I’ve heard people when I go into the on-deck circle, go up to the plate, today was pretty awesome after the post-game interview hearing everyone cheer. And hearing the fans cheer down the first base line today, meant a lot to me.”
The farewell was a fitting end to an outstanding second-half for Davis, who has amassed 161 homers —good enough for 10th on the club’s all-time list— in four-plus seasons.
Pending free agent Matt Wieters joked of Davis stealing the limelight “He’s been doing it for the last three year so I kind of expected him to hit a home run there. Wherever he signs, he better remember who got him all those pitches when he was here to hit.” <p> Perhaps it will be with Baltimore, with current players Adam Jones and Manny Machado already speaking out about the need to keep Davis in black and orange.
“It means a lot,” Davis said of the public support. “I’ve said before, this is a great group in here. I feel like we’re all brothers in here, and we’re all looking out for each other. We keep in touch in the off-season, and I really express them stepping out to express how much they want me back. I can’t say enough about them.”