Oriole Park at Camden Yards, one of the few stadiums in sports not to bear a company name, may be selling its naming rights. According to an inside source in the Orioles’ organization, owner Peter Angelos is entertaining offers for a new name for the Baltimore Orioles’ home field. While in the past, Esskay hotdogs made an offer to the Orioles, this time the offer is coming from two competing rivals – the Yankees and the Red Sox.
Apparently, the Boston Red Sox have offered the Orioles $4.3 million per year for a fifteen year deal if they change Camden Yards to “Fenway South.” “It’s important for our Red Sox fans to have a home away from home,” commented General Manager Theo Epstein. “Many of our fans travel to Baltimore to see the Red Sox play, and we want them to feel like they’re at a Red Sox game at home, minus the Green Monster of course.” 40,001 fans came to Saturday’s Red Sox-Orioles game, which is a vast improvement from the sparse crowds that have come to the park throughout the O’s struggling season. Rough estimates project that over 30,000 of those spectators were Red Sox fans.
Ricky Johnson, 43, one of the many homeless who beg outside of Camden Yards after games, commented, “I thought the Orioles won when I heard the loud roar after the game. It turns out they lost 8-2. The roar came from those cheap Red Sox fans. Those people never give me any money. Losers.”
James Wooster, 36, from Plymouth, Massachusetts, makes the trek to Camden Yards every year. “My son and I have been coming here since 2003,” commented Wooster. “It’s cheaper for us to take the train, stay in a hotel, and catch a game, than it is to buy tickets to Fenway Park.” With only a capacity of 37,000, Fenway Park has been sold out every game since May 15, 2003. While the Red Sox proposed overhauling or constructing a new stadium, they could not reach agreements with the City of Boston. “It would be cheaper and more advantageous for us to buy the naming rights to Oriole Park than to actually build a bigger stadium,” Epstein added. According to the proposal, the Red Sox organization would buy most of the seats at Camden Yards at wholesale, and then resell them to Red Sox fans. Currently, the Orioles mark up ticket prices to “prime games” (games against the Yankees and Red Sox) for almost twice the amount of any other game. According to the proposal, the Red Sox would offer prices similar to Fenway Park if they’re purchased through the Red Sox organization. All fans wishing to purchase advanced tickets , would have to go through the Red Sox; however, the remaining tickets would be sold at the box office on game day for the Orioles’ prime game price.
When the Yankees got word of the Red Sox plan to purchase the naming rights to Camden Yards, owner George Steinbrenner quickly proposed his own plan. According to sources within the Yankees organization, for an undisclosed amount of money, the stadium name would be changed to “Yankee Stadium at Camden Yards” with a tagline that reads, “Babe Ruth’s Training Grounds.” The Yankees would also be allowed to construct a replica of their Memorial Park somewhere on Eutaw Street, the top of the warehouse would be lined with a roof frieze identical to the roof of Yankee Stadium, and the stadium’s technical crew would be required to play the Metallica song “Enter Sandman” when Yankees closing pitcher Mariano Rivera enters the game. The proposal also provides a skybox where Yankees Vice President Brian Cashman can pace nervously while watching the game.
In the past, Orioles fans protested when the team entertained proposed naming rights. However, the City of Baltimore is reportedly encouraging Angelos to go ahead with the proposal. “It means a lot of revenue for us,” commented Governor Martin O’Malley (D). “In a weekend series against Boston or New York, we could see anywhere from 30,000 to 100,000 more visitors to the City of Baltimore. They would be flying or riding the train, staying at hotels, eating at our restaurants, purchasing tickets to the game. This is a lot of money for our City’s businesses. What I’d like to see is us put slot machines in those places we know they’re going to be – the stadium, downtown hotels, the airport, bars, stripper joints, and so forth.” According to sources, Governor O’Malley has asked his staff to put together a bill that would establish temporary casinos to have full unrestricted table gaming during Red Sox and Yankees series and a state-wide 1% sales tax hike during those days.
Southwest, Baltimore’s largest passenger airline carrier, is also hoping to cash in, offering an all-you-can-drink package for flights. Southwest CEO Gary Kelley said, “We offer non-stop flights between Baltimore and Boston every day. Our service is number one in customer satisfaction and efficiency. We’ve found that many Boston fans prefer to fly because its faster and relatively cheaper than the train and driving. We’d like to encourage more Bostonians by offering more flights, including post-game flights with complementary shuttle service to and from the game and an all-you-can-drink package. ” A flight attendant, who wished to remain nameless, discussed her hesitations to the new plan. “Boston fans are already trashed when they get on our flights. While alcohol might be more of an incentive, they’ll drink whether you offer alcohol or not. Our flights may only be 45 minutes, but you would be shocked at how wasted Bostonians can get in that short amount of time.” AirTran is expected to follow suit with similar packages.
The Charm City residents have mixed feelings about the proposals. Jason Ramsey, 29, said, “This is so typical of Peter Angelos. He’ll do anything to make a quick dollar. He’s been an embarrassment to this City since he got here. I’m not surprised he’s stooped to this level.” Robert Davis, 91, a lifelong resident of Baltimore, seemed a little confused about the report. “We have a baseball team? I thought they left in the 80s and went to Indianapolis.”
Other companies, including Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and Verizon are reportedly submitting proposals for naming rights. According to sources, Monistat 7 currently leads the corporate bidding war for the right to change the stadium’s name.
This article is a parody and not to be taken seriously.