Gunnar Henderson hit the first major championship of his career

The 21-year-old Oriole phenom is in an incredible rip right now, and that continued on Tuesday night at Camden Yards. Henderson led Baltimore to an 11-6 victory over Toronto by becoming the first O’Rookie to win majors and homers in three straight games since Ryan Mountcastle, who accomplished both feats in 2021.

So how does it feel to have Henderson on the plate right now?

“I feel like I just know what I want to do when I get into the box and go in there and execute my plan,” said Henderson, whose grand slam has been capped by his third six innings. “Take the pitch if you need to, if it’s not where I want it to be.”

After an automatic ball due to a field timer violation, the 1-0 cut came from Blue Jays outfielder Chris Bassett at 87.4 mph over the inside of the plate. This was a show that Henderson – who displays strength across the board – realized could do him a disservice. He swung and sent the ball 387 feet by Statcast in the opposite direction to the Orioles bulls in left center field, over Kevin Kiermayer’s jump.

It wasn’t a 462-foot blast like the one that hit the warehouse on a jump Sunday — which was the longest Eutaw Street homer in the 31-year history of the ballpark — but Henderson’s grand slam was the latest example of what a former prospect could do. .

“This is where the bread and butter is [opposite] Henderson said.

From May 12 to now, Henderson’s average has gone from .170 to .246 and his OPS has moved from .651 to .830. He hit seven of his 10 home runs during that span.

“You never want to see someone deal with adversity, but it’s all part of the process and part of being a major league player,” said manager Brandon Hyde. “Gan hasn’t done it here yet, and now, he’s gone through it and he knows how to get out of it.

“There will be peaks and there will be valleys, and right now the bat is swinging really, really well, and hopefully he can keep that going for a while.”

Given that Henderson is swinging one of the hottest bats in the major leagues, it was almost expected that he would land another big hit when he stepped up with the bases loaded – right?

“You can’t expect a guy to win a grand slam,” said Adam Frazier, who also hits a four-season homer for Baltimore, “but you expect him to hit the ball as hard as if he’s batting.” Left field, more center field, that was a very nice swing.”

Now this He is Something you can almost always expect from Henderson, especially lately.

“He’s a special talent,” says Dean Cramer, right to run two runs and strike out six in six innings. “The guy hits the ball hard and hits the ball away, kind of does it all.”

Despite playing without lineup fixtures such as Cedric Mullins (who went off with a right groin strain) and Mountcastle (who went on a 10-day Tuesday due to vertigo), the O’s posted five straight wins for their second-longest winning streak of the season. season. They’re closing in on their longest stretch, which was a seven-game stretch from April 16-24.

“We have a great group of guys here,” said Henderson. “It feels like a different person every night comes for us, and I feel that’s a huge testament to our team.”

Mostly recent nights though, Henderson highlighted. And there could be many more of them in the future – this year and for many years to come.

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