The Orioles have announced plans for the first home game of the 2015 season, Friday, April 10 at 3:05 p.m. against the Toronto Blue Jays.
PRE-GAME FUN AROUND THE YARD
To allow fans the opportunity to experience the excitement of Opening Day, the entire ballpark will open at noon on Friday. Each fan will receive a 2015 schedule Fathead® decal, presented by Pizza Boli’s, at the gates. Roving musical groups will entertain fans on Eutaw Street and the main concourses.
Fans are encouraged to be in their seats by 2:30 p.m., when pre-game ceremonies will begin. MASN broadcaster JIM HUNTER will serve as emcee for the pre-game festivities.
In a continuation of the Opening Day tradition, Orioles players and coaches will be introduced prior to the game. Orioles players will run through the center field gate on an orange carpet and take their places between first and second base. Manager BUCK SHOWALTER, coaches and staff will be introduced from the Orioles dugout. Members of the Blue Jays will be announced and will run from their dugout to line up between second and third base.
OriolesREACH has arranged for 80 youth from the Y of Central Maryland to line the orange carpet holding Orioles flags during player introductions and each child will also receive a complimentary game ticket for Opening Day. The Orioles and center fielder ADAM JONES are supporting the Y of Central Maryland’s “Y Send a Kid to Camp” campaign for the third consecutive year to help keep children and families throughout Central Maryland healthy in spirit, mind, and body.
For the 22nd straight season, one fan will be chosen to represent all Orioles fans as the team’s “10th man.” The fan will be introduced as a part of the Orioles starting lineup during the pre-game ceremonies.
NATIONAL ANTHEM AND GOD BLESS AMERICA
American tenor RICHARD TROXELL will perform the Canadian National Anthem and “The Star-Spangled Banner.” Troxell, a native of Thurmont, MD, has an extensive resume of film and theater performance experience both in the United States and abroad. Troxell will also sing “God Bless America” during the seventh inning stretch. This year marks the tenth time he has performed the National Anthem on Orioles Opening Day.
During the anthem, a 30’x 42’ American flag from Fort McHenry will be unfurled over the batter’s eye wall in center field. The flag is a replica of the one that flew over Fort McHenry when Francis Scott Key wrote the National Anthem.
Colors will be presented by both the United States Joint Armed Forces Color Guard, provided by the Military District of Washington, and the Flag Party of the Canadian Armed Forces, provided by the Embassy of Canada in Washington, D.C.
GOLD GLOVE AWARDS PRESENTATION FOR HARDY AND JONES
Rawlings established the Rawlings Gold Glove Award in 1957 to recognize the best fielders at each position. The award has evolved into baseball’s greatest measure of defensive excellence. Every year, managers and coaches of each Major League Baseball team select a squad of the best defensive player at each position in their respective leagues, excluding their own teams.
In 2014, shortstop J.J. HARDY and center fielder ADAM JONES were named Gold Glove Award winners at their respective positions. It marks the third consecutive year that both Hardy and Jones have earned the honor, and it is Jones’ fourth overall award. In a pre-game ceremony, STEVE COHEN from Rawlings will present both players with their Gold Glove Awards.
BALLPARK GATES OPENING EARLIER FOR ALL GAMES
For every game except Opening Day (when gates open at noon), all ballpark gates will now open two hours prior to the scheduled start time. Fans will now be able to enter the ballpark from any entrance, and go into the seating bowl, beginning two hours prior to the first pitch.
NEW FOOD ELEMENTS COMING TO ORIOLE PARK
The Orioles and their concessionaire, Delaware North Sportservice, have made several additions to the food offerings at Oriole Park, highlighted by several new concepts, as well as new menu options at existing ballpark concession stands:
Ole Mole by Modelo (lower level, first base concourse near Gate D):
· Gourmet Soft Tacos – Made-to-order soft tacos featuring barbacoa, pulled chicken, seasoned beef, or black beans.
· Churros – Traditional cinnamon sugar churros.
ESSKAY Gourmet Hot Dogs (on Eutaw Street below Roof Deck near Gate H):
· Crab Mac N’ Cheese Dog – ESSKAY hot dog with creamy mac n’ cheese, lump crabmeat, and Old Bay.
· 7th Inning Stretch Bacon Chili Cheese Dog – ESSKAY hot dog with thick-cut bacon, ballpark chili, cheese sauce, and diced onions.
· Eutaw Street BBQ Pulled Pork Dog – ESSKAY hot dog with house-made BBQ pulled pork, Old Bay coleslaw, and fried onions.
· Oriole Park Crab Dip Dog – ESSKAY hot dog with house-made crab dip, Old Bay, and cheddar cheese.
Baltimore Burger Company (on Eutaw Street below Roof Deck near Gate H):
· Bacon & Cheddar BBQ Burger – Burger with thick-cut bacon, BBQ sauce, battered onion rings, and cheddar cheese.
· Bacon, Mushroom, Swiss Burger – Burger with thick-cut bacon, sautéed mushrooms, sautéed onions, and Swiss cheese.
Regular hamburgers and cheeseburgers are also available.
All burgers can be ordered as single, double, or triple stack (one, two, or three patties).
The Chipper (lower level, third base concourse behind section 68):
· Crab Chipper – House-made kettle chips with lumb crabmeat, white cheddar cheese sauce, chopped scallions, and Old Bay.
· BBQ Pulled Pork Chipper – House-made kettle chips with BBQ pulled pork, cheese sauce, sour cream, guacamole, pico de gallo, and sliced jalapenos.
· Bacon Chipper – House-made kettle chips with Smithfield bacon, cheese sauce, sour cream, chopped scallions, and shredded cheddar cheese.
· Sweet Chipper – Sweet potato kettle chips with chocolate sauce, caramel sauce, whipped cream, and cinnamon sugar.
Smithfield Corner (lower level, first base concourse near Gate C):
· The Pork Burger, Camden-style – Smithfield’s pork burger with BBQ sauce, coleslaw, and fried onions.
· ESSKAY hot dogs and traditional Polish sausage with sauerkraut are also available.
Pizza Boli’s (three locations, one on each ballpark level):
· Pizza Boli’s cheese and pepperoni pizza will be available.
ORIOLES AUTHENTICS TO OPEN ON EUTAW STREET
The Orioles are opening a new Orioles Authentics store along Eutaw Street in a space formerly occupied by Art of the Game. Orioles Authentics will sell game-used memorabilia, including jerseys, bats, caps, and even bases and other unique items. Game-used baseballs, including some used in that day’s game, will also be available for purchase at each game. One hundred percent of the Orioles’ proceeds from all sales at the store will benefit the Orioles Charitable Foundation.
MLB SECURITY MEASURES
As previously announced by Major League Baseball, all MLB teams have implemented mandatory metal detection screening of all fans prior to entry at each MLB ballpark. Oriole Park at Camden Yards will now have walk-through magnetometers or hand-held metal detectors at each entrance in order to ensure a safe and fun environment for fans attending Orioles games. Fans are advised to allow themselves plenty of time for entry, as entry is expected to take slightly longer this season.
Prior to screening, fans will be asked to remove their keys and mobile phone from their pockets. Wallets and other identification or money holders can remain in their pocket or size-compliant bag (see below for rules on bags). Bags that do not meet size requirements will not be allowed into the ballpark.
Fans without a bag can utilize one of several Express Lanes found at Gates A, C, F, or H to go through security.
Other security measures include the following:
· All items permitted into the ballpark will be inspected. No bags or items exceeding the maximum size of 16″ x 16″ x 8″ are allowed into the ballpark. Permitted items must easily fit into a 16″ x 16″ x 8″ container. Bags on wheels are prohibited.
· No containers or unauthorized items can be left at any park entrance. Fans will be asked to return them to their vehicle.
· No re-entry will be permitted. Once fans enter the ballpark, they will not be permitted to leave and re-enter the facility. Fans should make sure they have everything they need before entering the ballpark.
· Only vehicles dropping off or picking up guests with disabilities are permitted to stop curbside at the ballpark. No other vehicles are permitted curbside, nor will fans be able to stand and wait with their vehicles.
· The Orioles welcome fan support in the form of handmade banners and signs. To ensure that all fans will have an unobstructed view of the ballgame, the Orioles do not permit the hanging of banners anywhere in the ballpark. Banners may only be displayed before and after the game and between innings. Banners are subject to confiscation if the content is commercial, political, and/or in bad taste according to the Orioles’ discretion. The Orioles reserve the right to remove any banner at any time.
· Air horns, cowbells, and other noisemakers are not permitted in the ballpark.
· Firearms, knives, or weapons of any kind are not permitted at Oriole Park.
FOOD AND BEVERAGE POLICY
The Orioles have one of the most liberal food policies in professional sports. Outside food and beverages may be brought into Oriole Park, subject to the following guidelines:
· No hard-sided coolers, thermoses, glass bottles, cans, or alcoholic beverages are permitted into the ballpark. Fans must leave these items in their vehicles before entering the ballpark.
· Non-alcoholic beverages in plastic bottles are permitted into the park. All items will be checked at the gates and any beverage that has been opened or partially consumed prior to entry is subject to confiscation if it is thought to contain alcohol. In addition, no plastic or paper cups of beverages are permitted into the park at the entry gates.
I-95 TRAFFIC ADVISORY
The Orioles and the Maryland Transportation Administration advise fans travelling on I-95 to make note of the following traffic pattern changes that will impact the area near Camden Yards:
· Southbound I-95 traffic lanes will split after the Fort McHenry Tunnel with two lanes to the left and two to the right. Fans heading to the ballpark via I-95 from the north must use the two right lanes at the tunnel (the right tube) in order to access the ballpark via Key Highway (Exit 55), I-395 (Exit 53), or Russell Street (Exit 52).
· Northbound I-95 traffic lanes will split with three lanes to the left and one to the right between Hanover Street and Key Highway. Fans heading to the ballpark via I-95 from the south must use the far right lane to exit at Russell Street (Exit 52) or I-395 (Exit 53).
· These lane splits will remain in effect for approximately eight weeks. Traffic patterns along I-95 will change throughout the duration of the project.
USE #BIRDLAND AT THE BALLPARK
Fans are encouraged to use social media while at Oriole Park at Camden Yards and share their experiences with friends and followers. By using the hashtag #birdland on Twitter and on Instagram, fans could have their tweets and/or photos selected to appear on the Oriole Park video board, before and during the game. Fans are also encouraged to visit www.orioles.com/connect and sign up to follow all of the Orioles official social media platforms.