From 1979 to 1985, one of the best outfield platoons in all of baseball resided in Baltimore with the Orioles. Gary Roenicke and John Lowenstein took turns providing managers Earl Weaver and Joe Altobelli with offensive pop and Orioles’ fans with plenty of fond memories.
During the seven seasons they played together in Baltimore, Roenick-Stein–their nickname back in the day–combined to hit 171 homers and drive in 574 runs. They were an integral part of the 1979 American League Championship team and the 1983 World Series Champion club.READ MORE: 7 Shot, Including 5 Teenagers, In West Baltimore Friday Night
Roenicke, a right-handed hitter, wore a football-style facemask on his batting helmet after getting hit in the face with a pitch by White Sox reliever Lerrin LaGrow in 1979. He would blast 25 HR’s that magical year in helping the Birds win their first AL crown since 1971. He would hit 19 more long balls in only 323 at bats in 1983. In that season’s ALCS, Roenicke smashed a two-run homer off Chicago’s Floyd Bannister to help lead the Orioles to a 4-0 victory in game two. The Birds would win the series in four games.
Lowenstein, a left-handed hitter, was one of the true characters to ever don an Oriole uniform. He also hit one of the most dramatic home runs in team history. In game one of the 1979 ALCS against the California Angels, Lowenstein hit a pinch-hit, three-run, walk-off homer against California reliever John Montague at Memorial Stadium to win the contest 6-3. Weaver would enthusiastically meet Lowenstein as he was rounding third base in a moment that still brings me extreme joy almost 36 years later.
Lowenstein also spent many years as a color commentator for the Orioles on HTS.READ MORE: ‘We Want To Prevent This From Happening Again’ Witnesses Describe Deadly Collision Between Fire Truck And Dirt Bike Rider In Baltimore As Advocates Call For Solutions
I’m sure these stories and many more will be recalled during the HOF luncheon on August 14th.
Joining Roenicke and Lowenstein in the Orioles HOF will be former All-Star 3B Melvin Mora. Mora was a standout player on some bad Baltimore teams and earned a great amount of respect from fans of the Orioles.
Longtime scout Fred Uhlman, Sr. was named as this year’s Herb Armstrong Award Winner.MORE NEWS: 'It's Ridiculous': Drivers React To Increase In Gas Prices
Congrats to all honored.