BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Tim Kurkjian, a Maryland native who once worked the Baltimore Orioles beat, has been awarded the Baseball Writers’ Association of America’s Career Excellence Award and will be honored at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum next July.

He will be presented the award “for meritorious contributions to baseball writing” during induction ceremonies scheduled for July 22-25 in Cooperstown, N.Y., the hall announced Tuesday.

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A native of Bethesda, Md., Kurkjian graduated from Walter Johnson High School and went on the study journalism at the University of Maryland. He landed his first job in 1979 at the Washington Star.

Following a brief stint covering the Texas Rangers, Kurkjian returned to the area to cover the Orioles for the Baltimore Sun, where he remained from 1986 to 1989.

After seven years as a national baseball writer for Sports Illustrated, Kurkjian in 1998 landed at ESPN, where he has worked ever since as a columnist for ESPN.com and an analyst for the show “Baseball Tonight.” He won an Emmy for his work on that program in 2002, and received a second in 2003-04 for his contributions to “SportsCenter,” the hall of fame said.

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Kurkjian has also written three books: “America’s Game,” “Is This a Great Game or What?” and “I’m Fascinated by Sacrifice Flies.”

All along, he’s kept his local roots. Kurkjian is on the board of directors for the University of Maryland’s Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism and was the university’s commencement speaker in 2007.

And you can tell he’s still a Maryland guy at heart by watching him crack up uncontrollably as ESPN host Scott Van Pelt breaks out his best Bawlmer accent.

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Brandon Weigel