Michael R. Smith/ALOST


akoiki-passport2 – by Adesina O. Koiki
A Lot of Sports Talk editor-in-chief

BALTIMORE — With every swing that ends up sailing over the wall (which have been many in the early going of 2024), Gunnar Henderson not only puts to bed any talk of a sophomore slump, but ascends higher and higher towards Major League Baseball stardom — let alone the home run leaderboard.

For the third consecutive game, Henderson hit a home run, and he did so to lead off the game in back-to-back contests to lead the Orioles to a 6-3 win over the Seattle Mariners in the rubber match inside Oriole Park at Camden Yards on Sunday afternoon. Henderson had two hits while Colton Cowser smacked three hits and drove in a run, part of a weekend where he went 5-for-8 with three walks.

A large part of why Henderson claimed last year’s Rookie of the Year Award was the 28 home runs he slugged during Baltimore’s surprise run to an American League East division title, and he now more than halfway to that total in just 44 games this season. On Sunday, Henderson skied a 1-2 pitch from Mariners starter George Kirby over the wall in right-center field to once again get the Orioles off to a quick lead. Five of his 15 homers this season are of the lead-off variety, and he is tied once again with the Houston Astros’ Kyle Tucker for the Major League lead.

“I thought there was a lot more development that I had and a lot better swings that I could have taken from last year,” Henderson said. “I feel like I’m allowing myself to do that this year and just really take good approaches to the plate and try to honestly just get on base for the guys behind me. And whenever I can do some damage, then I’ll try and do it.”

*Editor’s note: Above the byline is the photo gallery from Sunday afternoon’s game, with photos taken by DC-area photographer Michael R. Smith. After clicking on the first photo to enlarge the picture, make sure to press the left and right arrow buttons to scroll through the rest of the pictures. There are 14 pictures in total.

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Tags : Baltimore OriolesGunnar HendersonMajor League BaseballSeattle Mariners

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