In this 8/9 contest out of the Robinson Region, it features an Orioles and Ravens moment going head-to-head.
#8 – Jason Hammel Near No-Hitter vs. Twins
Jason Hammel had a lot of good games during his first season in Baltimore. You could argue that his complete game, one-hit performance against a more talented Braves lineup was better than this. My only comeback for that is, you only get one chance at a first impression, and Hammel made the most of his.
In his first start of the year, Hammel mowed down the Twins for 8 innings, and gave Baltimore fans a major thrill by not allowing a hit until the top of the 8th. For a guy with little on his resume before coming over in the Jeremy Guthrie trade, Hammel wasted no time revising his credentials. He was at his sharpest against Minnesota, with his trademark two-seam fastball darting from one side of the plate to the other at 94 miles per hour. After this performance, O’s fans started to think a little differently about the Jeremy Guthrie trade, and really the season as a whole.
#9 – Courtney Upshaw Forced Fumble In Super Bowl
Just another great draft pick by Ozzie Newsome and Co. coming through in a big spot for the Ravens. The Ravens just had a slim 7-3 lead at this point in the game, and San Francisco was threatening to cut into it with a quick strike drive catalyzed by Vernon Davis and the running game. Instead, the Ravens sniffed out a stretch run to James and descended upon him en masse.
James shed the first few tacklers to get back to the line of scrimmage, but Cory Graham did a text book job of stabilizing him so that Upshaw could come in and lower the boom. The fumble lead to a 10 play, 71 yard Ravens drive that culminated in a 1 yard TD pass to Dennis Pitta. If you’re being realistic, it probably caused a 10 point swing towards the Ravens and sent them on their way to their second Super Bowl title.
Voting is open from 3:00 PM on Sunday February 24 to 3:00 PM Monday February 25.