Press Release: The Orioles announced plans for the first home game of the 2017 season, Monday, April 3, at 3:05 p.m. ET against the Toronto Blue Jays, which will air on MASN, WJZ, CBS Radio’s 105.7 The Fan and the entire 40-station Orioles Radio Network.
PREGAME FUN AROUND THE YARD
To allow fans the opportunity to experience the excitement of Opening Day, the entire ballpark will open at noon on Monday. Each fan will receive a 2017 schedule magnet, presented by Long Fence, 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 pregame ceremonies will begin. MASN broadcaster JIM HUNTER will serve as emcee for the pregame festivities. Fans can also tune in on MASN and WJZ for coverage of pre-game ceremonies.
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 100 youth from the Baltimore City Recreation and Parks “Play Baseball” Program to line the orange carpet holding Orioles flags during player introductions. Each child will also receive a complimentary game ticket for Opening Day, concessions, an Orioles T-shirt and cap, as well as transportation to and from the game as part of the OriolesREACH Game Day Experience Program. Each season, the Orioles team up with third baseman MANNY MACHADO and his wife, YAINEE, to support the Baltimore City Recreation and Parks “Play Baseball” Program through the Manny Machado BaseBOWL Tournament. In 2016, the Manny Machado BaseBOWL Tournament raised more than $92,000 to support the Baltimore City Recreation Department’s eight-week “Play Baseball” campaign (via the Baltimore City Foundation). The initiative benefited 300 youth, ages 9-12, by supplying baseball equipment, uniforms, transportation, and field refurbishment to play baseball during the summer at Baltimore City Recreation and Parks centers. In support of the Machados’ efforts, the Orioles Charitable Foundation also donated $10,000 to Baltimore City Recreation and Parks.
For the 24th consecutive 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 pregame 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 11th 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.
CEREMONIAL FIRST PITCH
Longtime Orioles Radio Network broadcaster FRED MANFRA will join new Mayor of the City of Baltimore CATHERINE PUGH and Maryland State Senator BOBBY ZIRKIN in throwing out simultaneous ceremonial first pitches.
Manfra recently retired from full-time broadcasting duties after 24 years with the Orioles Radio Network, though he will still call select home games during the 2017 season. The East Baltimore native and Patterson High School graduate joined Orioles Radio broadcasts in 1993.
Mayor Pugh was sworn in as the 50th Mayor of the City of Baltimore on December 6, 2016. She has been a public servant for more than 15 years, holding elected office on the Baltimore City Council and in the Maryland General Assembly, as a State Delegate, State Senator, and Senate Majority Leader. She is the visionary, co-founder, and Chair of the Baltimore Design School, a public school for sixth through twelfth graders, and a founder of the Baltimore Marathon.
State Senator Zirkin was elected to the Maryland State Senate in 2006 and has been serving in the Maryland General Assembly since his election in 1998. He currently serves as chair of the Judicial Proceedings Committee.
SILVER SLUGGER AWARD PRESENTATION FOR TRUMBO
2016 Silver Slugger Award recipient MARK TRUMBO will receive his award from a Louisville Slugger representative during a special pregame ceremony. Trumbo was voted as one of three American League outfielders to receive a Silver Slugger Award, marking the first time in his career that he has won this award. The Orioles have now had 12 different players win a Silver Slugger Award and 21 total winners.
The Silver Slugger Awards, determined by a vote of Major League Baseball coaches and managers, recognize the best offensive producers at each position in their respective leagues. Coaches and managers base their selections on a combination of offensive statistics including batting average, home runs, on-base percentage, and slugging percentage, as well as the coaches’ and managers’ general impressions of a player’s overall offensive value. Managers and coaches are not allowed to vote for players on their own team.
FOOD AND BEVERAGE POLICY
The Orioles have one of the most fan-friendly 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.
MLB SECURITY MEASURES
All Major League Baseball teams have mandatory metal detection screening of all fans prior to entry at every ballpark. Oriole Park at Camden Yards will again 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.
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.
SOCIAL MEDIA ON OPENING DAY
Fans are encouraged to use social media while at Oriole Park at Camden Yards to share their Opening Day experiences with friends and followers. By using the hashtag #Birdland on Twitter and on Instagram, fans can have their tweets and/or photos selected to appear on the Oriole Park video board before and during the game. Major League Baseball and New Era are also encouraging fans to share photographs with their #CapsOn across social media platforms on Opening Day. Fans are encouraged to visit www.orioles.com/connect and sign up to follow all of the Orioles official social media platforms.
ORIOLE PARK BALLPARK APP
The Orioles have announced promotions available exclusively within the free MLB.com Ballpark mobile application at Oriole Park during the 2017 season. MLB.com Ballpark, the official app of Oriole Park at Camden Yards, offers mobile check in, social media, special offers, rewards, and exclusive content for anyone with a supported Android smartphone or iPhone.
Incentives for fans to “check in” using MLB.com Ballpark include offers that will reward fans at every home game and that reward fans for checking in over the course of the entire season.
Daily offers for every game include:
- Exclusive T-Shirt: A limited edition “25th Anniversary” T-shirt for 25 fans who check in and unlock this offer.
- Seat Upgrade: One fan out of the first 200 to check in each game will unlock an opportunity to upgrade their seats to a Field Box location.
Season-long offers include:
- On-Field Pre-Game Experience: The first 25 fans who check in to at least 25 games at Oriole Park using the application by September 2 will unlock an offer for the opportunity to enjoy a pregame, on-field experience with a guest at a game during Fan Appreciation Weekend.
- Autographed Promotional Items: On various dates throughout the season, fans who check in will be eligible to receive an Orioles promotional item autographed by an Orioles player.
- 25,000 Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Points: Fans who check-in will be entered into a monthly drawing for 25,000 Southwest Airlines Rewards Points (one entry per game).