The Baltimore Orioles franchise has had some outstanding men who have played first base throughout the team’s last 30 years.
These top Baltimore Orioles first basemen not only could scoop a ball coming in at Major League speed, but they could poke one out of the yard, too.
But, before we discuss the three best first basemen in the last 30 years, it’s worth noting the criteria that makes one great.
First base might look like an easy position. All you have to do it catch the ball and tap the base before the runner gets there, right?
Not so fast.
When making the out, the first basement needs to be ready to field the ball and get back to the base in time. They need to be able to catch the throw that’s coming in at serious speed. And, those throws aren’t always coming in with pinpoint accuracy.
First basemen also need to be able to field a ball that is hit to the right side. But, they also need to know when to let the second basemen get it, too. Remember that if a runner is on first, he has to be able to keep that runner from stealing second. It’s an important position that can affect several aspects of the game.
On most teams, the first basemen is a big guy so he can be a big target. He has to be athletic enough to cover the base. Usually, the man on first is one of the best hitters on the team. In today’s game, the first baseman is often one of the big power hitters on the team – think Albert Pujols or Miguel Cabrera. In the AL, many first basemen eventually transition to the DH position.
These three men are the best to man first base in the last three decades of the Orioles.