Fast-forward to the present. It is hard to believe that fourteen years have passed since the Orioles were last in the playoffs. Hard to believe it has been fourteen years since we had a winning season. Hard to believe that this year’s college sophomores hadn’t started kindergarten the last time the Birds finished a season over .500. A whole generation has come to age not knowing what it feels like to support a winning hometown baseball team.
A couple of weeks ago I was invited to join a group led by Debbie and Steve Peroutka called “Take Back Our Yard” (http://takebackouryard.com/). The group buys blocks of Orioles tickets when the Yankees or Red Sox are in town to help bring orange back to the ballpark. In addition to the camaraderie of other Orioles fans, participants get orange Oriole t-shirts and a pre-game party at the Sports Legends Museum. The catch? Wear orange and do not sell or give
away the tickets to opposing fans.
Debbie Peroutka is exactly what
needs. “We want companies, or little leagues, or whatever organization to say ‘let’s buy a section’ with everyone wearing orange,” says husband Steve. Every grassroots movement has to start somewhere. It is needed. We need to show our support. We need to show that Baltimore can support its team. I hope this movement catches on. Oriole Park
Shawn Herne is the Chief Curator for the Babe Ruth Birthplace Foundation, Inc.