Israeli-American pitcher loses 1st playoff start for Orioles

ARLINGTON, Texas (NewsNation) — Baltimore Orioles pitcher Dean Kremer made his postseason debut Tuesday night, all while thinking of his family members back in Israel.

Kremer, who is from Israel and Jewish, wore a Star of David necklace during his start against the Texas Rangers. His mother was at the game.

While the Orioles lost and are now out of the playoffs, Kremer is getting a lot of credit for playing amid the deadly conflict in his family’s home country.

The MLB pitcher was notified on Sunday that he was going to be on the mound against Texas in Tuesday’s game. Not only was there the pressure of starting during a postseason game, but Kremer had to balance his postseason debut with the news of war from a place special to him.

But baseball fans showed their support for the first Israeli-American citizen to pitch in the major leagues.

“Family’s OK. It’s a very sad situation,” Kremer said ahead of game three of the American League Division Series.

Born in California to parents who immigrated from Israel, Kremer has dual citizenship in the U.S. and Israel. He spends a lot of time each year in both countries and even speaks Hebrew fluently.

The 27-year-old played for the Israeli national team in the World Baseball Classic in March.

Kremer started both clinching games for the Orioles in the regular season, the one that secured a playoff spot and the 100th victory that ensured the AL East title.

Despite the conflict unraveling in Israel, Kremer said there wasn’t a hesitation to play in Tuesday’s game. He did say, however, that the war would be in the back of his head.

Kremer wouldn’t provide further details about his family back in Israel, but said every single person in the clubhouse has come up to him to offer kind words, including Orioles manager Brandon Hyde.

“Hats off to him because he’s put in a lot of work and deserves every bit of it,” Orioles shortstop Gunnar Henderson said.

However, after winning 101 games and finishing the regular season with the American League’s best record, the Orioles trailed by six runs after just two innings Tuesday night. They never gave themselves a chance in a 7-1 loss, their eighth postseason defeat in a row over 10 seasons.

Kremer allowed six runs and seven hits in a season-low 1 2/3 innings against Texas, giving up homers to Corey Seager and Adolis García.

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