It was a beautiful summer day at Price George’s Field in Bowie, Maryland. The birds were chirping, the heat index was over 100 degrees, a torrential downpour was on the horizon… and the National Champion Baltimore Dockers were taking the field for a demonstration of America’s other favorite pastime: Australian Rules Football.
The Dockers were excited to join their local minor league baseball team, the Bowie Baysox, for their Baysox Down Under Australian Night. And with the camera crews rolling, posts set up in the outfield and local legend Matty Byrne in the announcer’s box, the Dockers put on an exciting 5 on 5 demonstration to give local fans a taste for the game.
Dockers spiritual leader and all-time best-dressed Terence “Tez” McAuliffe dominated on the field, while typically solid players Jack Chalmers and John O’Connor made the laser-leveled field seem more like an ice rink than an outfield. However, the best display of the afternoon went to Orioles prospect and Bowie Baysox pitcher Alex Wells, who bombed a goal from 60 meters like it was child’s play.
There is no official word yet on whether Wells will be derailing his MLB dreams to wear the orange and black for the Dockers next season.
After a sweltering 20-minute display, the Dockers organized a meet and greet with supporters and Baysox fans, complete with a handball station where spectators could test their skills in hopes of winning their own miniature footy. While many gave it their best go, the best accuracy of the night went to Mrs. Maryland 2019, who made solid contact after some great coaching from footy newbie Zachary Gooch. Unfortunately, Louie, the lovable green Bowie Baysox mascot, was hindered by his giant fuzzy hands and couldn’t quite hit the target, despite some stellar coaching.
After a comeback victory by the Baysox that left every Oriole fan in attendance hopeful for the future, the Dockers wrapped up their recruiting efforts and put down all the delicious ballpark cuisine to enjoy some fireworks.
It was the end of a great night at the ballpark celebrating Australian culture and sport, and just the beginning of a great partnership between two of Maryland’s flagship teams.