Jackson Holliday receives Ripken family blessing to wear unofficial Orioles retired number

Jackson Holliday will be wearing a very special number when he takes the field for the O's for the first time.
Baltimore Orioles v Pittsburgh Pirates
Baltimore Orioles v Pittsburgh Pirates / Christopher Pasatieri/GettyImages

Late Tuesday night, the Baltimore Orioles promoted Jackson Holliday to the major league roster after just 10 games at Triple-A Norfolk. Along with his promotion, Holliday was given permission to wear a very historic number. He'll be wearing the number seven, which is the first time any player has worn the number since 1988.

History of No. 7 with the Baltimore Orioles

The No. 7 jersey is very significant to the Ripken family. The number was held by Baltimore legend Cal Ripken Sr., father of the Iron Man himself. Ripken Sr. was with the Orioles organization for 36 years, serving in a variety of roles. This included as a player, scout, coach, and as a minor league and major league manager.

Another member of the Ripken family also wore the No. 7 for a brief time. After Ripken Sr. was relieved of his managerial duties in 1988, his son Billy Ripken switched his number to seven as a way of honoring his dad. Billy Ripken was the last player to wear this jersey number.

Ripken family gives their blessing to Jackson Holliday

The number was unofficially retired in 1999, after the passing of Cal Ripken Sr., and was never awarded again by the team at the big-league level. Holliday will be the first to wear the jersey since then, and the Ripken family seems very excited about the future of the number.

The Orioles reportedly received permission from the Ripken family before giving him the number, and Cal Ripken Jr. made it official with his statement on Twitter/X.

Billy Ripken also chimed in on the decision during his appearance on MLB Network Wednesday morning. He said that he knew "that family would honor the fact that senior was part of that and give us another opportunity to throw senior out there," when explaining the decision to hand the number over to Holliday.

The excitement for Jackson Holliday continues to grow, and now he has the chance to build on the great legacy of the number seven in Baltimore. Holliday takes the roster spot of Tony Kemp, who was DFA'd Wednesday morning after starting the season 0-for-9 with one walk.

Holliday joins the roster as the consensus No. 1 prospect in all of baseball. He was off to a scorching start at Triple-A Norfolk, slashing .333/.482/.595 with two home runs in just 10 games played. Now he has a chance to show his worth at the major league level.