This Day in Sports History: May 6, 1984
On May 6, 1984 Cal Ripken Jr. hit for the cycle.
The reigning World Series Champion Baltimore Orioles were in Arlington for the final game of a three game series against the Rangers. After a slow start to the season, going 4-12, the Orioles had turned things around headed into the Texas series winning seven of their last nine games.
The 1983 American League’s Most Valuable Player, Baltimore Shortstop, Cal Ripken Jr., however, was in a bit of a slump, going through a 2-17 stretch at the plate. But on May 6th, Ripken put an end to his slump in future hall of famer fashion by hitting for the cycle to help lift the Orioles to a 6-1 win over the Rangers.
His first hit came in the third inning, a triple that ran in Rich Dauer to put Baltimore up 3-0. Gary Roenicke would bring him home and the birds went up 4-1.
Ripken lead off in the fifth with a single and then again in the seventh with a double, but would be left on base both times.
The score was 5-1 Baltimore headed into the final frame until Ripken completed the cycle on a 3-2 pitch that he sent out over the left field wall.
Listen to Cal Ripken Jr. talk about hitting for the cycle on May 6th, 1984.
The Orioles swept the Rangers with a 6-1 win in that final game of the series, handing Texas their fourth consecutive loss. It was Baltimore’s 9th win out of their last 10 games.
Ripken’s cycle was the first one by and Orioles player in 24 years, the last one being hit by another Orioles legend, Brooks Robinson, on July 15th, 1960 at Comiskey Park, the old home of the Chicago White Sox.
After Ripken, only two other Orioles have accomplished the rare feat. Aubrey Huff hit for the cycle on June 29th, 2007, and was the first Oriole to accomplish it in front of a Baltimore home crowd. Huff was followed by Felix Pie who did so two years later on August 14th, 2009, also in Baltimore.
References: Society for American Baseball Research, Baseball Reference.