- Baltimore Orioles outfielder Stevie Wilkerson recorded an unlikely save on Thursday night, taking the mound as a relief pitcher in the 16th inning.
- Despite Wilkerson’s fastball being slower than many Little League players, he proved crafty enough to work a 1-2-3 inning and become the first position player to record a save in MLB history.
- After the game, Orioles manager Brandon Hyde referred to Wilkerson as "Dr. Poo Poo," leaving some fans to wonder how he got stuck with such a bizarre nickname.
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The Baltimore Orioles won in wacky fashion on Thursday night, defeating the Los Angeles Angels 10-8 in a 16-inning marathon that was capped off with outfielder Stevie Wilkerson recording the first save by a position player in MLB history.
As the game dragged through extra innings, both teams tore through their bullpens, with the Orioles eventually being forced to turn to Wilkerson to take the mound.
Wilkerson had pitched before for the Orioles, but only in blowout situations. On Thursday, the stakes were much higher, with Wilkerson stepping up for the save after a two-run home run from Jonathan Villar gave Baltimore the lead in the top of the inning.
Watching Wilkerson pitch, it’s no surprise he usually plays in the field. While he can get the ball over the plate, his fastball tops out at around 56 miles per hour — slower than many pitches fans will see at the Little League World Series later this summer.
And yet, Wilkerson’s slow throws baffled the Angels into a 1-2-3 inning, forcing pop-ups and groundouts from Brian Goodwin, Kole Calhoun, and Albert Pujols to secure the win for the Orioles.
On Twitter, fans were in awe of Wilkerson’s performance.
After the game, Wilkerson sounded bewildered with his own performance. "I don’t think I’ve wrapped my head around it yet," Wilkerson said, per the Baltimore Sun. "What a wild game. That was just crazy. I’m glad I could go out there and be part of getting us a win."
But the oddest comment of the night came from manager Brandon Hyde, who referred to Wilkerson as "Dr. Poo Poo" with no further explanation.
"Dr. Poo Poo comes in and does a great job getting three outs," Hyde said. "I’m hoping for three at-’em balls. It was below the hitting speed."
As impressed as fans were with Wilkerson’s historic save, some immediately demanded to know more about his bizarre nickname.
According to Joe Meoli at the Baltimore Sun, Wilkerson was given the nickname thanks to a previous emergency relief outing, after which he said he was throwing "poo poo."
As it turns out, Wilkerson’s accrued quite a few hilarious nicknames in his time as an emergency reliever for the Orioles.
Wilkerson has now made three appearances and thrown four innings in relief and sports a 2.25 ERA, .143 opponent’s batting average, and a save.
While it might be easy to joke about Wilkerson throwing 56mph heat right down the pipe, it’s tough to argue with the results — Dr. Poo Poo gets the last laugh.
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