Monday, May 10, 2010

The Daily Camden

If there is any solace to be gained from this train wreck of an Oriole season, it may come from a quotidian assemblage of photos taken of Camden Yards during the present campaign. From April to October, The Daily Camden includes a picture a day to keep the losing away. It reveals just how superior this magnificent ballpark is, even when compared to the athletes who play in it.

Conceived and commissioned by writer Rafael Alvarez, the photo collage is populated by a different contributor each day. Alvarez likens his writing process to the careful arrangement of pieces in a stained glass window. This project has a similar feel to it as the pictures captivate the imagination with each entry and provide a deeper glimpse into the faceted and wide ranging beauty of Oriole Park. The photos thus far -- one of the foul pole, another of a gate shadow, and at least two taken at sunrise -- evoke more power than the Orioles line-up.

Memorial Stadium was a hulking concrete-and-brick mastadon of a structure. It left splinters in your fingers and the taste of watery Coca-Cola in your mouth. It was raw in the cold air and more humid than a sauna in the summer. Pitching, defense, and the three-run jack ruled on 33rd street. The stadium blended into the neighborhood community and thundered and shook when the fans erupted. You went there to see some of the greatest players to ever play the game and you expected the Orioles to win.

Today, Oriole Park is as alluring a draw for me as the team itself. Inside the confines, you bask in the baseball history of the city with its Ruthian ghosts and Kaline sandlot ropes. We have yet to put a championship team on the field or at least one designed to excel with tall imposing pitchers and game-changing sluggers. These daily photos of Camden Yards further emphasize that this ball yard has consistently been more spectacular than the team that plays in it.


Blogger Caryn said...

Dean, your next-to-last paragraph on Memorial Stadium is pure magic. A pleasure to read! When is your day to take a pix at Camden Yards?

3:45 PM  

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