Former Baltimore Orioles hero Delmon Young is finding success in the Australian Baseball League.
“Bases load. Young swings. Line drive! Cruz is in! Pearce is in! Hardy around third, he’s going to try to score, and… SAFE! THE ORIOLES HAVE THE LEAD!” If you’re a Baltimore Orioles fan, you can hear the roar of the crowd take over your soul when you hear those words.
It was the biggest moment of Delmon Young‘s major league career, a career that began with high hopes and expectations for the first overall pick of the 2003 MLB draft. His first full season in the majors featured 162 games played and 51 extra-base hit, earning the outfielder a second-place finish in 2007 American League Rookie of the Year voting.
That offseason, the Young would be traded from the Tampa Bay Rays to the Minnesota Twins, where he experienced three and a half productive seasons with the Twins, finishing his career with stints in Detroit, Philadelphia, Tampa Bay again, and finally Baltimore.
In his two seasons with the Orioles (2014-15), Young played in just 135 games, posting a .288/.317/.399 slash with 27 extra-base hits, including one of the most memorable base hits in the history of Camden Yards.
Because I know you haven’t seen this video enough, make your Saturday even better by re-living the experience again.
Young was released by the Orioles midway through the 2015 season, ending his major league career at just 29 years of age. It was a tough fall for a player once considered the top prospect in baseball.
Since his days with the Orioles, Young’s career has taken him to Mexico, the Dominican Republic, Venezuela, and Australia where he has found success and continues to live out his dream of playing baseball.
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Currently, Delmon Young finds himself in the Australian Baseball League, serving as the Designated Hitter for the Melbourne Aces, who just clinched a spot in the ABL Championship Series with a win over the Auckland Tuatara.
As Young and his teammates compete for an ABL title, Young may find himself taking home MVP honors after a big season at the plate.
The 33-year-old lead the ABL in games played (40), home runs (13), RBI (42, also a Melbourne Aces franchise record), and slugging percentage (.662). He owns a .345/.394/.662 slash line and a respectable 29/10 K/BB ratio this season.
With pitchers and catchers not reporting for another 10 days and live baseball action not return to our TVs for about three more weeks, I think I might be tuning into the Australian Baseball League Championship Series and cheering on Young and Aces.
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The championship series will take place next week with the Aces taking on today’s winner between the Canberra Cavalry and Adelaide Giants.