BALTIMORE, Md. — It was the most memorable moment from a most memorable day.
Thursday's Orioles home opener was paused to recognize Trey Mancini and his return to Oriole Park at Camden Yards.
"It was amazing," said the Orioles first baseman.
Mancini is back after missing the entire 2020 season battling colon cancer. Both dugouts, players on the field and the 10,150 fans at the ballpark gave the 29-year-old a standing ovation before his first at-bat.
"I think it’s well documented what I went through and what it took to get back to playing," said Mancini. "It was nothing short of what I expected. We have the best fans in baseball here."
"Yeah that was a really emotional start to the home season there," added Orioles Manager Brandon Hyde. "I thought the ovation was awesome."
Amazing moment as Trey Mancini comes to the plate. Standing ovation from both dugouts, fans, players on the field. #Orioles— Shawn Stepner (@StepnerWMAR) April 8, 2021
Mancini may have expected the warm welcome at the plate but what caught him off-guard was the outpouring from of the stands during the pregame intros.
"I wasn’t expecting a prolonged ovation then. I thought it was going to be more when I was hitting," said Mancini. "I definitely had to fight back some tears there when I got the first ovation. That’s probably what will stick with me the most."
From a baseball standpoint, on the field, Mancini said he has been putting a lot of pressure on his shoulders during this first week of the season. That has led to his .179 batting average. He has two hits over his last four games.
"Trying to perform too much and prove that I’m the same guy and I know I am. But, I don’t think I’ve gone about these last four games the right way, from pitch selection to everything."
He is hoping that getting a hit at his last at-bat during Thursday's 7-3 loss to the Red Sox will turn him around.
"I just need to stick to an approach up there and I have not been doing that well at all."