MILWAUKEE — The extended O’Hearn family had enough members at American Family Field on Tuesday night to fill much of the section behind the visiting dugout — and they made enough noise to fill the domed stadium with shrieks when the ball flew off the bat of the player they all gathered here to watch.

There was Ryan O’Hearn, rounding the bases, his seventh-inning, opposite-field home run momentarily giving the Orioles a lead in what would turn into a 4-3 defeat in the 10th inning against the Brewers. The lead evaporated in the eighth with a run off right-hander Yennier Cano, and then Joey Wiemer walked it off for Milwaukee when he drove in the automatic runner with two outs against right-hander Austin Voth.

But before then, there was the celebration for O’Hearn. He had a fan section, including his mother Christine and father Tom. There was Aunt Marie, and Uncle Jim, and Uncle Kevin. Tom was one of seven, and all seven brothers and sisters made the trip back to Milwaukee to see Ryan O’Hearn play for Baltimore. In all, there were more than 30 O’Hearns at the ballpark — including the one rounding the bases — and even then, there could’ve been more extended family.

“It’s usually 50 at a party if I’m buying beer,” Marie quipped.

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O’Hearn was born in Dunedin, Florida, and later moved to Texas, but like many Wisconsin transplants, this is a homecoming. His father was born and raised here. Tom and his brothers served beer at Brewers games when it was the old County Stadium. Tom attended St. Norbert College in De Pere, Wisconsin, then moved to Florida, met his wife and raised a family.

But a Wisconsin connection doesn’t leave, so O’Hearn was raised a Green Bay Packers fan, and games in Milwaukee always draw crowds of family members.

“I knew exactly where they were sitting,” O’Hearn said. “I’ve played here I think three times in my career, and every time about 35 people show up and support. They’re very proud of the O’Hearn name, they love seeing O’Hearn on the back of the jersey, so it’s pretty special for me to be able to perform in front of them.”

They would’ve cheered regardless of how O’Hearn did, but the designated hitter gave them something extra with his homer in the seventh.

He saw an outside sinker and stayed on it, lifting the pitch from right-hander Joel Payamps over the left field fence for the momentary 3-2 lead. The section of fans behind the Orioles’ dugout rose to their feet along with the flight of that ball.

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“It’s always special when I play here, and always special when I do well,” said O’Hearn, 29. “Get to hit a homer and point at them and smile at them, it’s pretty cool.”

“The fans are great around here,” said O’Hearn’s mother, Christine. “Everybody helped me celebrate. Everyone is really nice about it. We’re just so excited for Ryan. He’s tried so hard, I mean, it’s pretty amazing he got this far. He did it all on his own. He just grew into it.”

O’Hearn’s path here wasn’t streamlined. He worked through the minors with the Kansas City Royals and played parts of five seasons with them before he was traded this offseason to Baltimore. He fought for a place with the Orioles during spring training, yet he opened the year with Triple-A Norfolk.

Then his chance arrived, and despite limited playing time, O’Hearn has taken the opportunity and run with it. His .302 batting average is behind only Austin Hays, and O’Hearn’s .911 on-base-plus-slugging percentage is the highest on the team. He can play first base or in the outfield, and that versatility has led to more consistent plate appearances of late for manager Brandon Hyde.

“Big hits for us,” Hyde said. “Taking really good at-bats. That was a loud sound going the other way like that, homer. Huge hit to give us the lead at that time, we just couldn’t add any more runs.”

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It’s not the first time O’Hearn has arrived in Milwaukee and put on a show for his family. In his most recent game before Tuesday at American Family Field, O’Hearn — then a member of Kansas City — clubbed a homer off the batter’s eye beyond center field.

His family was there to see it, too, just as they were there Tuesday. This is home, after all, for so many of them.

“The best part is, even though we’re all Brewer fans, we all cheered like crazy when he hit that homer,” Aunt Marie said. “We’re all Ryan fans first.”

andy.kostka@thebaltimorebanner.com

Andy Kostka is an Orioles beat writer for The Baltimore Banner. He previously covered the Orioles for The Baltimore Sun. Kostka graduated from the University of Maryland and grew up in Rockville.

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