The 2020 Baltimore Orioles had few veterans because the front office traded most of them away in recent previous seasons.
So, as the 2020 Baltimore Orioles are home for the year, several former teammates are having fun with their new teams on the road to the World Series.
Let’s take a look at what a few of them are doing:
Manny Machado seems to be having the most fun of any former Orioles player. After a quiet 2019, he returned to greatness in his second season with the Padres. His season has been so good that he’s in the running for the NL MVP. His performance in the NL Wild Card series against the Cardinals has been relatively quiet.
Historically, he’s faltered a bit in post-season play, but his game-tying home run made a difference in the 11-9 win on October 1. The
Nick Markakis and the Braves are enjoying their night off after sweeping and shutting out the Reds. The Braves had the longest scoreless playoff game in history, but finally won 1-0 on Wednesday. They took the series 5-0 on Thursday. Markakis went 1-5 in the first game, and 1-4 in the second. He did not score a run.
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Both Machado and Markakis are on teams loaded with exciting young players. At age 36, Markakis is the oldest position player on the Braves. The only older player on the Braves is Darren O’Day, who is also a former Orioles player. O’Day pitched in the 11th in Game 1, striking out one, giving up a double to Nick Castellanos, and walking two. No runs scored on his watch.
Nelson Cruz is out, after the Twins unexpectedly lost to the Astros. After his 16 home runs, he couldn’t get the 36-24 AL-Central-winning Twins over the 29-51 Astros. Historically, Cruz has been a powerhouse in the playoffs, and he continued his dominance in 2020. In both games against the Astros, he hit an RBI double that scored the only runs for the Twins. But, like the 2020 Orioles, Cruz is watching the rest of the playoff series from the comfort of his home.
The Marlins are also having some fun in the playoffs, too. Former Orioles second-baseman Jonathan Villar did not play in the two games against the Cubs, but Richard Bleier did. He faced one batter in the 5-1 win on Wednesday. He got two outs in the 2-0 on Friday. The Marlins are a team to watch, and the most unexpected addition to the 2020 playoffs.
Hopefully, the 2021 Orioles will get to the playoffs, so instead of watching former players, fans can watch their current favorites.