Another sign of summer winding down is the end of the baseball season. I live about a seven-minute walk from Oriole Park at Camden Yards and Ravens Stadium, both in the heart of downtown Baltimore. Camden Yards is a great "old-fashioned" stadium, very intimate and warm and nestled into the surrounding community (unlike Ravens Stadium, next door).
The eastern part of the stadium is a quarter-mile long, and 25-foot wide warehouse, once used a part of the B&O railroad system and now used as office space for the Orioles and other businesses. You can see the warehouse on the right side of the image above, which was taken by the pilot of this balloon.
As the Orioles play out the last few games of the season, the crowds dwindle and the atmosphere becomes very casual. Before we went into the game (a twilight double-header, the second half of which started at 8:30 p.m.), we wandered around the Plaza of Champions to look at the statue of Babe Ruth and the retired numbers of former Orioles, including Cal Ripken, Jr. and Eddie Murray. Amazingly, it's been 13 years since Cal broke Lou Gehrig's consective games streak at 2131. And if you can't guess, I am a huge Cal Ripken fan.
One of the interesting facts about Camden Yards is that it was built in the exact same place as the tavern that Babe Ruth's father owned in the early 1900's. The house where he grew up is just a few blocks from the baseball park and is now a small museum.
Soon enough, the 2008 baseball season will be just a memory and we can look forward to a better season next year.