It all started with a simple tweet. On August 24, 2018, Robert Pattinson, the heart-throbbing, Hollywood star, tweeted about the Baltimore Orioles. He simply said, “Looking forward to seeing the O’s play tonight, especially in such a beautiful city.” What followed were a wave of tweets from fans praising the gorgeous Aussie and urging him to come to the ballpark. Soon after, the Orioles’ vice president of communications, Kate Abdo, got in on the action and confirmed that the team would be offering a special on-field welcome to Pattinson, saying that the organization would “definitely love to have him come and join us for a game.” Before long, gossip websites were speculating that he might even make an appearance during the seventh inning stretch.

And then…bombshell. Less than an hour after his first tweet, Pattinson deleted it. He would later explain that he did so because he wanted to avoid the hype that comes with being famous. Turns out, he didn’t want to be bothered with the triviality of celebrity in 2019. A month later, while promoting his new movie, The Lost City, Pattinson explained that he now views being famous as a “privilege” that comes with “a huge responsibility.” He added, “I don’t want to…[make] a bad decision because I’m thinking about my own desires. So that’s why I’m trying to be the best person I can be and be in my own head.”

Since then, Pattinson has deleted several other tweets about the Orioles and gone completely radio silent about their games. But did the Orioles beat him? Did they play a role in changing his mind about visiting the United States? Did they influence his decision to move to Australia? Let’s take a closer look.

The Orioles Give Robert Pattinson an Unexpected Welcome

If you follow baseball, you might know that the Baltimore Orioles have a colorful history with A-list celebrities. In the past, they’ve hosted numerous famous guests including Babe Ruth, Mickey Mantle, and more recently, Rob Lowe. But it was not until recently that they’d managed to land a celebrity of Pattinson’s caliber. The team’s previous two attempts to attract the Aussie star were both met with resounding failures. In fact, they’d tried so hard that it almost seems like they were trying to lose him.

In 2016, they’d tried to get Pattinson to agree to a Q&A session with fans on their Facebook page. What they got was an e-mail from his lawyer denying the request and calling the team out for its attempt to “harass” the actor. The following year, they’d offered him free tickets to a Blue Jays–Rays game. But despite his famous last name, Pattinson had decided that he would not attend, citing personal reasons. (He later said that he’d been unwell and had to take medication regularly, which the team denied.)

So when Abdo tweeted that the O’s would give Pattinson an “unexpected” welcome and suggested that he might even make an appearance during the seventh inning stretch, it was definitely a sweet moment for baseball fans in Baltimore.

However, despite the warm welcome that the O’s gave him, Pattinson still decided to stay away from the U.S. for the majority of the year. While promoting The Lost City in January 2019, he made it clear that he wouldn’t be spending a lot of time in America that year. Interviewed by Entertainment Tonight, Pattinson said, “I think it’s a really interesting time to be living in Baltimore right now. There’s a lot of history there. I spent a lot of time in Baltimore growing up, but it’s also a place where I feel very comfortable…[because] it’s such a beautiful city and has so much to offer. So I really, really like it.”

The Loss Of Virginity And The Evolution Of A Sportsfan

Pattinson isn’t the only famous sports figure to have shied away from the U.S. in 2019. Among the others are Serena Williams and Alex Rodriguez, who both decided to do their residency in Canada. But while those two may have had their reasons for living abroad, it’s clear that they’ve both had their hearts broken by the U.S. (And no, it’s not because Canadians are especially cold on the other side.)

In 2019, American sports fans have more than just the Orioles to cheer for. They have the Boston Red Sox, New York Yankees, and others to choose from. And while some might find it hard to believe, it’s clear that all four of these teams were very important to the evolution of Pattinson. And quite frankly, it’s impossible to overstate how much all four of these teams mean to him. (Ask yourself this question: What would you do if you suddenly found yourself unable to get emotionally attached to anything or anyone ever again? All four of these teams are good at losing, which means they will never leave you.)

The first indication that something was up with Pattinson came in March 2019, when he deleted his Instagram account and began posting a lot about the importance of self-love. The next month, fans finally got to see the actor in person when he came to Toronto to perform at the Scotiabank Concert in Toronto. At the end of the night, he took the stage and thanked fans for coming out and saying hello. He then went on to say that he’d been away too long and that he missed them. He added that he hoped to be back in the U.S. soon. (He didn’t say which state specifically, but it’s safe to assume he means California.)

Even in the midst of all this, the Orioles kept up the good work and made it known that they wanted to welcome Pattinson back. The team tweeted, “Looking forward to seeing you in Baltimore [in 2019]….Our fans are some of the most welcoming in baseball.”

Then, in a stunning turn of events, the team went above and beyond what anyone would’ve thought they would do for an A-list celebrity. Not only did they throw out a ceremonial first pitch with the name Pattinson on it, but they also had a special section set aside for him at the game. He wasn’t alone in this section either; several of his family members, including his grandmother, were there to lend a hand. (It could’ve been worse…they could’ve had Taylor Swift there to lend a hand.)

Ultimately, it seems that the Orioles’ open arms worked. Maybe it was the unexpectedness of the invite or the fact that it came from a team he’d never heard of before. Maybe it’s because the Orioles are a winning team with a well-deserved reputation for being hospitable. Or maybe it was because they’d had a change of heart and decided that they wanted to give the heart-throbbing Hollywood star a chance to experience a Baltimore Orioles game. Whatever it was, it’s clear that it worked. As he explained to ET, “I’ve never been to Baltimore, so this is actually going to be quite the experience.”

And what a glorious experience it was. If you follow baseball, you can’t miss that the Baltimore Orioles are known for their winning ways and their welcoming attitude. But did they give Robert Pattinson an edge? Did he find that extra motivation to perform better after his brush with mortality? Or was it just that the Orioles are simply a fun team to watch and you can’t help but have a good time at a game? We’ll never truly know the answer to these questions. What we do know is that the Baltimore Orioles beat the crap out of Robert Pattinson and gave him a memorable night—one that he’ll never forget.