Wednesday night, the Baltimore Orioles got their sixth walk-off home run of the season and their third in the past week. Sure, this home run was special because it was of the walk-off variety but there’s more to it. It came from an unlikely source, Henry Urrutia.
In honor of Henry Urrutia’s walk-off home run on a 1-2 pitch in the bottom of the ninth inning to take down the Mets (for the first time since June 2009) on Wednesday night, we’re taking a look at a few more exciting stats for the Oriole.READ MORE: Northwestern Beats Maryland In Manning’s Coaching Debut
Here are 5 Things You Should Know About Henry Urrutia:
1. First things first, Henry Urrutia is a Cuban defector. A defector is a person who gives up allegiance to one entity in exchange for allegiance to another, in a way which is considered illegitimate by the first state. Players attempting to play in MLB often choose not to defect to the United States, because establishing residency in the United States means they must enter the draft. If they defect to another nation, they can become free agents, allowing them to choose their offer.
2. Signed by the Baltimore Orioles as an amateur free agent in 2012. Urrutia then reported to the Bowie Baysox of the Double-A Eastern League in April 2013. After playing 52 games there, the Orioles promoted him to the Norfolk Tides of the Triple-A International League on June 28.
3. Baseball is in his blood. Urrutia is the son of Ermidelio Urrutia and a cousin of Osmani Urrutia — both are Cuban outfielders.
4. Urrutia is just the fifth Oriole to have his first career home run be a walk-off; he joins Merv Rettenmund (1968), Jim Hardin (1969), Dave Criscione (1977) and Chris Hoiles (1990).
5. His game-changing walk-off home run was impressive, but what some are finding was even more impressive was his transition to America. Urrutia came to America just over two years ago, but he has become fluent in English.READ MORE: Gervonta Davis' Longtime Trainers Sit Down With Rick Ritter Ahead Of Staples Center Fight
His teammates were proud of him, not just for the win they all shared, but for this moment. They all remember their first career home run. Adam Jones had some words for him on Twitter:
Proud of my man @henryorioles. I know you've been waiting for that moment your entire life. More work to do #StayHungry— 10 (@SimplyAJ10) August 20, 2015
His home run ball, given to Henry by a Mets fan, is going to someone very special — his 16-month old son.
Urrutia said it was amazing to get the ball. - "Now my son can say one day 'This is the first homer for my dad in the big leagues.'"— Steve Melewski (@masnSteve) August 20, 2015
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Urrutia: "When I saw Jonesy put the pies in the faces of the other players, I never think he threw too hard. Now I have pie everywhere."— Roch Kubatko (@masnRoch) August 20, 2015
You can watch Adam Jones slap a celebratory pie in Urrutia’s face mid-interview right here.