Steve Wilkerson

Former Clemson outfielder Steve Wilkerson early Friday morning became the first Major League Baseball position player to earn a save. AP/ Mark J. Terrill

Former Clemson outfielder Steve Wilkerson didn't arrive at Angel Stadium on Thursday night thinking he would make history.

Or that a Major League baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels would last into Friday morning.

But Wilkerson's Baltimore Orioles finally beat the Angels, 10-8, in a crazy affair that lasted six hours and 19 minutes and didn't end until Wilkerson was the ninth Baltimore pitcher on the mound.

That's right, the starting center fielder became the first position player in Major League history to earn a save.

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No matter that none of his 14 pitches topped 56 mph.

Three up, three down. And that included getting future Hall of Famer Albert Pujols for the last out.

“I don’t think I’ve wrapped my head around it yet,” Wilkerson told reporters after the game. “It was a wild game. It was crazy. I’m just glad I was a part of it.”

Wilkerson, 27, has also played infield during his two Major League seasons. A Marietta,Ga., native, he was Baltimore's eighth-round pick in the 2014 draft.

He also went 1-for-7 at the plate during the game with a run batted in.

Jonathan Villar threw out the Angels’ potential winning run at the plate in the 15th inning and then hit a two-run homer in the 16th as the Orioles held on for what for them this season was a rare win.

“Yeah, I think that was the best day of the year for all of us,” Villar said.

Both teams blew big leads.

The Angels should have won on Mike Trout’s bases-loaded double against Tanner Scott in the 15th inning, but David Fletcher tried to score from first and was called out on a close play at home plate.

Wilkerson went to get a pitching glove around the 13th inning because he figured he might be needed for his third relief appearance of the year. He moved from center to the mound in the 16th and sparked a few chuckles from the hearty remaining crowd in Anaheim with his underwhelming pitches.

But he got three straight outs with Brian Goodwin, Kole Calhoun and Pujols all retired on batted balls.

“I was just hoping somehow they would hit three balls at somebody,” Baltimore manager Brandon Hyde said. “It’s below hitting speed, so that’s hard.”

The Associated Press contributed to this story

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