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Thread: Anyone else miss Memorial?

  1. #1
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    Question Anyone else miss Memorial?

    Sure Camden Yards is a great ballpark, but....
    Does anyone else long for the days of Memorial Stadium?

    Being born in '71, the Oriole games I "grew up" at were strictly a 33rd Street affair. To me, there was something purely mythic and magical about the hallowed grounds of Memorial Stadium. Then came 1992 and the opening of Camden Yards.

    The park is indeed great, offering a seating arrangement and amenities not found at the old "insane asylum," but to me there is still something missing after 12 years, besides a pennant!

    The atmosphere of the whole place seems manufactured and manipulated, and lacking the natural vibe that was evident on 33rd. Nowhere to me is this more evident than the loudspeaker "claps" (clap, clap; clapclapclapclap) that try to induce the crowd into repeating it! I don't ever seem to recall the crowd at 33rd to need to have a device to direct their attention back to the game being played.

    Perhaps you might say I'm regressing, but I still really feel that the baseball experience at Memorial was superior to Camden. Sure, we had the likes of Brooks, Frank, Boog, Tippy, Ed-die, and Jim among many others to help, but am I the only one to find the experience on 33rd to be more natural?

    Quick recollection - One thing I always recall wondering was how the back of Memorial was set up. There was this illusion that centerfield bordered directly on a park, with only green and trees visible beyond the wall. As a child, and not knowing the street layout of the area, I must admit, I was truly fooled!
    With the Expos bound for DC, the Montreal market should be poised and ready for the relocation of Loria's Marlins!

  2. #2
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    I absolutely miss the Asylum. I am just old enough to remember going to Memorial Stadium several times when I was a kid... and that place was LOUD.

    The closest thing I actually got to that experience since then, was early this year, when many of the white-collars were disenchanted with the franchise, and many of the blue-collars were excited about the new pickups this year (and the record; the O's were above .500 at that time). It rained cats-n'-dogs that night, but we had a lot of fun.

    They gave us all-star ballots that night... we made paper airplanes out of 'em and launched them all over the stadium!

  3. #3
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    Here's a nice link to it, including facts and everything: http://www.ballparks.com/baseball/american/memori.htm
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  4. #4
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    I'm not sure what I'm typing here, as a "ubid" popup has blocked my screen, and I CAN'T CLOSE THE DANMED THING, as its close box is tucked under the FEMA banner ad, but no, I don't miss Memorial at all, mostly because of the drive. I'd see many fewer games a year if the birds were still in that coop.
    (Thankfully, the "ubid" popup was not on the edit screen)
    4 5 (7) 8 20 22 33 42 (44)

  5. #5
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    post subject

    I prefer OP@CY because their isnt a bad seat in the house.Memorial
    Stadium has much the better memorys because of the players &
    the Glory Years.

    We are making a comeback & this yrs team is a much better then
    the last few.Patience grasshoppers cream always rises to the top.
    baseball nutcase

  6. #6
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    On SEPTEMBER 20, 1958, 46 years ago today, HOYT WILHELM of the BALTIMORE ORIOLES pitched a NO-HITTER, beating the NY YANKEES 1-0. Baltimore's one run came off the bat of catcher GUS TRIANDOS.

    This took place at MEMORIAL STADIUM.....I WAS THERE and SAW THIS TERRIFIC GAME!!

    c.

  7. #7
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    Okay, you can tell by the avatar that I'm not really an Orioles fan-but living in southern Maryland I've been to a number of Orioles games since we were sold Short (poor pun intended).

    For the record-it's much easier for me to drive to Glen Burnie, catch the light rail and detrain right outside the stadium. OP@CY is a beautiful park-BUT it's too anti-septic. Sure it conjures up visions of stadiums of yore-but I'll take gritty old Memorial Stadium, with the sometimes blocked view (from those concrete support columns and the upper deck). It was a real pain to get to and away from if there was a large crowd, but the atmosphere was a lot more fun and when the team was playing well the place would ROCK!!! Maybe this is just the reminiscing of a 50+ year old man but Memorial Stadium (except for the drive and parking-or lack of it) seemed to have a spirit of it's own.

    Maybe if Peter Angelos ever fields a winning team at OP@CY, some of that enthusiasm will return.
    "For the Washington Senators, the worst time of the year is the baseball season." Roger Kahn

    "People ask me what I do in winter when there's no baseball. I'll tell you what I do. I stare out the window and wait for spring." Rogers Hornsby.

  8. #8
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    I went to a couple of Orioles game at Memorial Stadium when I was younger.

    It was a good atmosphere, except for finding a place to park on 33rd Street.

    Jason Maier
    Yahoo! IM - capsfan1981
    AOL IM - TerpFan1981

    Go Orioles !

  9. #9
    I went to opening day at Camden in 92 and 93. In the first three years of the new parks existence, I went to 100 games. From 1971-1991, I went to numerous games at 33rd street. I must say that Camden Yards seems phony and contrived in comparison to Memorial. The fan base at the old park was working class, and really into the game. Nobody told us when to clap. Instead, during the late seventies and early eighties (the glory years of Section 33 and Wild Bill Hagy), the place was like a madhouse. Camden, with it's yuppie fan base has always seemed fake and hollow. It's no surprise that not much has really happened there over the past 14 years (with the exception of Cal's streak, of course). The public relations department can talk about magic all they want, but it's gone. The times have changed, and Camden Yards is simply a reflection of a corporate, mass media driven culture. Memorial Stadium, with it's drunks and fights, was a reflection of a parochial age that was dazed and confused. It was much better that way.

  10. #10
    I do. I was an employee there from Spring to fall 1993 as a member of the Baysox grounds crew.And from Spring to fall 1995 on the Baltimore Stallions Ground crew Staff and from 1996 to winter 1997 member of the Baltimore Ravens Ground crew Staff. Had a lot of good memories there.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by DODGER DEB
    On SEPTEMBER 20, 1958, 46 years ago today, HOYT WILHELM of the BALTIMORE ORIOLES pitched a NO-HITTER, beating the NY YANKEES 1-0. Baltimore's one run came off the bat of catcher GUS TRIANDOS.

    This took place at MEMORIAL STADIUM.....I WAS THERE and SAW THIS TERRIFIC GAME!!

    c.
    Were you rooting for Hoyt? A Dodger fan, rooting for an ex-Giant.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Iron Jaw
    Were you rooting for Hoyt? A Dodger fan, rooting for an ex-Giant.
    I was absolutely rooting for HOYT, Ironjaw! I remember that it was a cold overcast day, but the game made it well worth sitting through.

    I saw many games at Memorial Stadium from the late 50's through the mid- 60's. Having spent most of my baseball life at OUR Ebbets Field, where WE could literally reach out and touch OUR players, I always found Memorial very "unbaseball (is that a word?) friendly", having to sit atop this high wall and looking down on the field. It definitely was not the best of ballparks, IMO.

    c.

  13. #13
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    As you can tell from my autosignature, I am not much of a Baltimore fan, but I saw the subject line in the list. I went to Memorial Stadium a few times as a kid growing up in Northern Virginia, but didn't get to go too often because my parents hated the trip up there....and the traffic then wasn't as bad as the traffic now. Camden Yards is a wonderful place and is much better as a ballpark, but the atmosphere suffers from precisely the same problem that the Bullets and Capitals have faced since they moved from the Capital Centre to the MCI Center—the new facility is considerably easier for the "corporate crowd" to attend and that leads to (a) higher ticket prices, (b) more of the good seats being targeted to the corporate crowd, (c) people using the games to entertain clients and the like, and (d) the result being less of a hard-core atmosphere. Go to a Caps game sometime and you'll see the lower seating bowl with plenty of open seats (except when opposing fans buy them) and the upper seating bowl relatively crowded because those seats are far more affordable. We didn't have that problem at the Capital Centre because, quite frankly, it was a nuisance to get out there after work, so the corporate crowd were less prevalent. (Not that I MIND MCI. I work six blocks away and walk to games all the time. I wouldn't make many games out in Landover due to the traffic and the need to leave work too early.) The ticket pricing is less of a problem in baseball, but with the corporatization of these sorts of events the atmosphere is bound to suffer.

    Let me make it clear that I'm not picking on Baltimore—I'm sure the Nationals' new ballpark will suffer from the same issue (to some degree, RFK already does right now, because so many businesses snapped up the good seats to ensure priority in the new facility).

    So I don't "miss" Memorial Stadium per se.....but I do miss the days that Memorial Stadium symbolizes, the days when going to a sports event was something the people in the crowd did because they were FANS. About the only sporting events I can think of where the crowd is still there predominantly as sports fans are MLS games.
    I will not assimilate into the Angelos Collective. Resistance is not futile.

  14. #14
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    Memorial Memories

    Memorial Stadium was a very Cozy stadium and I miss it. You're right that parking and getting out of the city was a nightmare but I wasn't afraid to walk around the neighborhood(as long as I didn't stray too far). I remember coming out of the front enterance once and Alan Trammel was standing there talking to friends or family. He asked me If I'd take their picture. Doyle Alexander was waiting for him in a cab outside. Neat memory. I was a Senators fan but we were lucky to be able to go to Memorial to see such great players.

  15. #15
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    Those were the days. Sometimes I think baseball would have been better off had Camden Yards never happened.

  16. #16
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    I feel exactly the same way about Detroit's Comerica Park.....

    It is the passing of the culture of our youth..... gone but not forgotten.

    Thanks for resurrecting this thread... sincerely.... thank you

  17. #17
    Back when I was a kid the O's were always in playoff contention and every game mattered so the fans were into the game. Even if the O's were down if someone got on base the crowd would start going crazy believing they were going to come back and win. One game that comes to mind was when the O's faced the White Sox and after trailing by 3 runs in the ninth Fred Lynn hit a game winning home run. The fans went crazy as Lynn rounded the bases. I was also there when Jim Palmer pitched a one hit shutout against the Twins in 1982 and it is a memory I will never forget.

    I do have a few bad memories though. One was the parking which was horrible. You parked in a lot where every car was bumper to bumper and you could not leave even if you wanted to. Another bad memory was if you were unlucky enough to be put in the top part of the upper deck because that's were the drunks were.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by ryors View Post
    I feel exactly the same way about Detroit's Comerica Park.....

    It is the passing of the culture of our youth..... gone but not forgotten.

    Thanks for resurrecting this thread... sincerely.... thank you
    The thing about Tiger stadium though was it was falling apart and nobody with money had interest in maintaining it. I grew up going to Tiger Stadium games and loved them and it will hold a place in my hear, but Comerica is just a superior stadium.

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