New Stadium = New attitudes

April 03, 2008 |

What a difference a new stadium makes…

At a time when almost everyone is blaming Peter Angelos for single-handedly causing the demise of the BALTIMORE Orioles, that demise actually started happening the day that Oriole Park at Camden Yards became the home of the BALTIMORE Orioles.

I remember my first time going to OPACY – it was the first game played there – the exhibition game between the Mets and the BALTIMORE Orioles.  It was weird seeing what people were wearing.  Virtually every major league team hat and/or jersey was represented.  How did this happen?  I wondered to myself, is this BALTIMORE’S stadium, or some new concept called a “Major League Baseball Stadium” where ALL team apparel would be represented and accepted as normal attire?  What happened to seemingly everyone being a BALTIMORE Orioles fan at a BALTIMORE Orioles game?      

Strike one…

My first trip to our 13 game season ticket seat a week later was another jolt.  Despite the reports that there were no obstructed view seats, and based on the quality of the Terrace Box seats at Memorial Stadium, imagine the shock of sitting in a “Terrace Box” seat at OPACY and realizing that many Terrace Box seats would not even have a view of the entire scoreboard.  A ball hit more than 10 feet in the air – well, you can’t see the ball, so you have to instead look at the fielders to figure out how far the ball was going to travel.

Strike two…

The next season, sitting in a box seat at OPACY, Lee May is introduced as the 1st base coach for the Kansas City Royals.  This BALTIMORE Oriole fan stands up, yells, and claps for Lee May.  Literally everyone who was sitting around me looks at me as if to say “HUH?”  I asked out loud, don’t you all know who Lee May is?  Again, everyone sitting around me looks at me with their best “HUH?” look.

Now I’m scared…really scared…

How could this be? No one as far as I can see sitting around me knows who Lee May is…the Big Bopper…the guy who helped a young Eddie Murray…the guy who Brooks threw out from foul territory in the 1970 World Series…

Strike three…

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