The Seattle Mariners selected Adley Rutschman in the 40th and final round of the 2016 MLB draft out of Sherwood High School in Oregon.
Rutschman opted to attend Oregon State University, a move that paid off handsomely. Three years later, Rutschman was the first overall pick by the Baltimore Orioles and received an $8.1 million signing bonus.
He made his return to the Pacific Northwest on Monday night, going 2-for-5 with a home run and two RBIs in the Orioles’ 9-2 victory.
The teams will continue their three-game series Tuesday night in Seattle.
Rutschman played in front of hundreds of family members and friends who made the trip from the Portland suburbs. He raised his hand toward his family as he rounded the bases following a solo shot in the third inning that gave Baltimore a 4-0 lead.
His grandfather, Ad, 90, was in attendance, as were Rutschman’s parents, Randy and Carol. Ad spent more than a quarter century at Linfield College. He’s the only coach at any collegiate level to win national titles in football and baseball.
“That, to me, is one of those life goals to have my grandpa see me play in the big leagues, in a big league stadium,” Rutschman said before Monday’s game. “… He’s someone who sets the bar very high, who I strive to be like.”
Ryan Mountcastle, Anthony Santander, Austin Hays and Jorge Mateo also went deep for the Orioles, who hit back-to-back homers in both the third and fourth innings — all with two outs.
“We’ve got a lot of confidence right now,” said Orioles manager Brandon Hyde, whose team has won five of its past six games. “Our dugout is as good as I’ve seen it here since I’ve been here. It’s just super positive. Guys are really pulling for each other.”
The Orioles are scheduled to send right-hander Dean Kremer (2-1, 1.71 ERA) to the mound Tuesday for his fifth start of the season.
Kremer pitched 5 2/3 scoreless innings in his last outing, a 4-0 victory against the host Chicago White Sox. He went six scoreless in the start before that but didn’t get a decision in a 1-0 victory against visiting Tampa Bay. He’s 0-0 with a 5.00 ERA in two career starts against Seattle.
The Mariners are set to counter with left-hander Robbie Ray (6-6, 4.07). Ray has allowed just two runs on 10 hits over 20 innings in his past three starts, showing the form that helped him with the American League’s Cy Young Award last season with Toronto.
Ray is 2-3 with a 5.34 ERA in six career starts against the Orioles.
The Mariners’ Jesse Winker (seven games), J.P. Crawford (five) and Julio Rodriguez (two) all received suspensions from Major League Baseball for their roles in Sunday’s brawl against the Los Angeles Angels in Anaheim, Calif. All three players have appealed and won’t serve any time until after getting hearings with MLB officials.
Mariners manager Scott Servais said he was surprised “to a certain extent” by the severity of the suspensions, but added: “It doesn’t matter what I think. It’s up to the commissioner’s office.”
The Mariners also made a trade Monday, acquiring veteran first baseman Carlos Santana from Kansas City to help fill in for the injured Ty France.
–Field Level Media