It was the year of the Orioles. 1983. They were our heroes. With gloves and bats. With heat and power. They were our American League Champions. And then they were our World Champions. How sweet it was.
For folks who'd like to reminisce about some of those golden games, the Baltimore Orioles are presenting a 1983 World Series Reunion Weekend.
The weekend's activities will include a reunion picnic with many of the players from the 1983 Orioles and Phillies teams, autograph signings, auctions, a home-run derby between a couple of well-known power-hitters, a "Turn Back the Clock Night" and a reunion game between members of the 1983 teams.
Things kick off Saturday with a reunion picnic, where fans can enjoy a lunch from Boog's Barbeque and then meet more than 25 members of the 1983 Orioles and Phillies teams.
Orioles players and coaches expected at the picnic include Mike Boddicker, Al Bumbry, Todd Cruz, Storm Davis, Rick Dempsey, Mike Flanagan, Dan Ford, Glenn Gulliver, Elrod Hendricks, Tito Landrum, Tippy Martinez, Scott McGregor, Eddie Murray, Joe Nolan, Jim Palmer, Gary Roenicke, Lenn Sakata, Ken Singleton, Tim Stoddard, Bill Swaggerty and Jimmy Williams. Also scheduled to appear are manager Joe Altobelli and general manager Hank Peters.
Phillies players expected at the picnic include Marty Bystrom, Larry Christenson, Darren Daulton, Ivan DeJesus, Bob Dernier, Greg Gross, Kevin Gross, Al Holland, Sixto Lezcano, Len Matuszek, Mike Schmidt, Ozzie Virgil and Bobby Wine.
Players will share World Series memories and sign autographs. There will also be a silent auction of Orioles and Phillies memorabilia. The picnic, which takes place at the south end of the Warehouse, between Gate A and the new memorial, benefits the Babe Ruth Museum and the Baltimore Orioles Charitable Foundation.
Saturday at 6:40 p.m., before the Orioles and Phillies game at Camden Yards at 7:05 p.m., there will be a home-run derby between Eddie Murray and Mike Schmidt. Both Hall of Famers hit more than 500 home runs in their careers, a feat accomplished by just 19 players in baseball history.
Also before Saturday night's game, ticket-holders will gain early access to watch batting practice and to get autographs from the reunion players who will be on the field and throughout the concourse. There will also be a silent auction of autographed items, jerseys and memorabilia during the game, which will be a Turn Back the Clock Night game with O's and Phillies players in uniforms from the 1983 season.
Sunday at 11 a.m., ticket-holders can watch the reunion players take to the field for batting practice and then play a three-inning reunion game at Camden Yards.
The Orioles and Phillies game Sunday at 1:35 p.m. will again feature the current players in uniforms from the 1983 season. And a silent auction of Orioles and Phillies memorabilia, reunion jerseys and autographed items will take place during the game.
Retro jerseys worn by the current Orioles and Phillies will be up for auction, as well, on www.mlb.com through noon on Sunday.
The reunion picnic runs noon-2 p.m. Saturday at the south end of the Warehouse. Tickets are $60. The home-run derby takes place at 6:40 p.m. Saturday, with the game beginning at 7:05 p.m. Game ticket-holders may view the derby. On Sunday, the reunion teams' batting practice begins at 11 a.m., with the reunion game at 12:30 p.m. The scheduled game begins at 1:35 p.m. Tickets are available at the Orioles Box Office, through Ticketmaster or by calling 888-848-BIRD.
For more family events, see Page 45.