In farewell letter to 'Baltimore family,' Manny Machado writes to fans: 'You are forever in my heart!'

In his first extensive comments since his trade Wednesday to the Los Angeles Dodgers, former Orioles star Manny Machado took to Instagram to share a heartfelt 201-word letter to “my Baltimore family,” including Orioles fans, teammates and management.

The shortstop was the organization's first-round pick in 2010, and spent parts of seven major league seasons in Baltimore. He's set to become a free agent this offseason.

“To my Baltimore family, I’ve spent the last few days trying to figure out how I would say goodbye but there wasn’t an easy way to do it,” he wrote. “I first joined this organization at the age of 17 and these past eight years have far exceeded anything I ever could’ve imagined. Throughout the ups and downs, you embraced me unconditionally and you took a kid from Miami and brought me up as one of your own. I’ve enjoyed my time here and you all have played a big part in that!! Thank you Birdland! You are forever in my heart!

“To the Baltimore Orioles, it has truly been a blessing to put on that uniform every day. To the Angelos Family & Dan Duquette, thank you for making my dreams come true!!! To Buck and the coaching staff, thank you for your commitment and dedication to making me the best player and teammate I can possibly be…I wouldn’t be where I am today without all of you. To my teammates, we’ve shared some amazing times with lots of memories & friendships that I’ll cherish forever. Schoopy, I love you bro and I know you will carry the torch!!! !Much love always.”

Machado is expected to make his Dodgers debut Friday night against the Milwaukee Brewers.

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