The home to the Baltimore Orioles, Oriole Park at Camden Yards, has been ranked as the third-best ballpark in baseball by The Washington Post.
To put together the rankings, the Post had five of its sportswriters create their own lists, ranking all the ballparks in the MLB. They then brought all five lists together and created a composite list.
Ranked ahead of Camden Yards at number two is the Pittsburgh Pirates stadium PNC Park, and at number one is the San Francisco Giants stadium AT&T Park, best known for its view of the San Francisco Bay.
The highest Camden Yards ranked on any of the writers’ lists was second on Dave Sheinin’s list, and the lowest it ranked was fourth on Thomas Boswell’s list.
Along with each entry was a recommendation for a place to eat nearby, what to do at the park, what to do while in town, and a quote from a player.
More from Baltimore Orioles
- What other Baltimore Orioles Offseason Storylines will you be interested in seeing?
- Baltimore Orioles to Face Numerous Playoff Contenders Down the Stretch
- Baltimore Orioles Showing Encouraging Signs During Recent Wins
- The Baltimore Orioles and the Expanded September Roster
- Orioles Josh Rogers Expectations in his Major League Debut
For a place to eat nearby, the writers recommended LaScala for “Authentic Italian food.” As the writers put it, “The restaurant is tiny, but the flavors are large.”
For what to do inside the ballpark, it should come as no surprise that Boog’s Barbecue was recommended, as well as the crab dip waffle fries from Flying Dog Grill, and the baseball home run plaques located on Eutaw Street.
And as for what to do while in town, the Post unsurprisingly recommends visiting the Inner Harbor and the aquarium. And then, “After you see the fish, you can order some or drink like one; a few blocks further are Little Italy and Fells Point.”
The player they quoted in the article was none other than former Baltimore Orioles catcher Matt Wieters, who had this to say about his former home:
"I think Camden Yards, it’s a great mix of being able to be a newer-feeling stadium, but also has kind of the charm and the old feel. I love the brick, you love the ways they worked the warehouse into the field. I feel like it was really well put together where they still gave a lot of character to it. And at the same time, you still get most of the new frills of stadiums built after 1990."
Boswell had similarly great things to say about Camden Yards, calling the Baltimore Orioles home “the most influential park in baseball history.”
He also said that “[Camden Yards] is so fundamentally in touch with the spirit of the game that 15 of the other MLB parks, including Nos. 1 and 2, essentially copied its old-becomes-new ambiance,” adding that Camden Yards “is the reason that this list exists and why baseball is the only sport where the pleasure of the venues may rival the game itself.”
Wieters and Boswell are right, Camden Yards was an incredibly important park in the history of baseball. Prior to its creation, the general trend in baseball was multipurpose parks, parks like Tampa Bay’s Tropicana Field (which, unsurprisingly ranked last on the Post’s list) and what is now the Rogers Centre in Toronto.
Originally, the architectural firm creating Camden Yards wanted it to look like the new Comiskey Park, however that idea was turned down in favor of a retro design, an idea that started a revolution in ballpark design, inspiring many ballparks throughout baseball.
Former Baltimore Orioles owner Eli Jacobs wanted to call the new park Oriole Park, but then-Maryland governor William Donald Schaefer wanted to call it Camden Yards, so they struck a compromise and called it Oriole Park at Camden Yards.
Camden Yards has seen plenty of major games, including Cal Ripken Jr.’s historic 2,131 game, and it’s no surprise to Orioles fans that it ranks so highly on the Post’s list of the greatest ballparks in the MLB.