It was a grand slam get-together at Morgan State University's Murphy Fine Arts Center, as the Babe Ruth Museum presented "A Legendary Evening - Reunion of the 1966 World Champion Baltimore Orioles." Several hundred fans noshed on gourmet sandwiches, pizza, pasta and fancy chips and dips. But food wasn't the big attraction. It was the chance to meet and mingle with almost 20 former Orioles. Not just any O's, but members of the '66 team that won the World Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers in four games - the last three as shutouts.
And, it seemed almost everybody at the party had a story to tell.
"I was 14 at the time, and had tickets to the fifth game. But they won in four," said Baltimore orthopedic surgeon Dr. Gary Pushkin, who pointed out that it was his 12-year-old son, Jeremy, who had provided the impetus for coming to the party.
"I've heard a lot about the team, and these are some of the best baseball players who ever played," Jeremy Pushkin said as he gazed at Tom Phoebus, Boog Powell and Jim Palmer.
"I was at Game 3. Wally Bunker was pitching," recalled attorney Tom Gisriel.
"We were both there," added John Broderick, a fellow partner at Hodes, Ulman, Pessin & Katz. "I was 3 or 4. This is my generation. ... I just smile seeing them."
"I remember when my son was 7 or 8 and taking him to the old Memorial Stadium to see Brooks [Robinson] and Frank [Robinson] playing. He's now 44," said retired accountant Bob Stout, who had come to the party with his wife Betty.
Ten-year-old Isabella Wolf's date was her dad, M&T Bank portfolio manager David Wolf. "I really like baseball and my dad had an extra ticket," she explained.
It was also old home week for many of the former Orioles.
"I haven't been back in 20-some years," said the series-winning pitcher Wally Bunker, who now lives in Ohio. "It's nice to see how everybody's doing. ... My grandkids think it's the coolest."
Perhaps the evening was best summed up by Loyola College groundskeeper Til Strudwick, who came to the event fully decked out in Orioles regalia, hat and shirt covered in a myriad of O's patches.
Strudwick stuck out his hand to shake that of former Bird Paul Blair as he walked by.
"Hey, Paul," he said, "Thanks for the memories."
Wally Bunker's role in the 1966 World Series was misstated in an earlier version of this article. The Sun regrets the error.