That isn’t a photoshopped moment of Camden Yards in Baltimore, Maryland. That is the beginning of the April 29, 2015 game between the Chicago White Sox and the Baltimore Orioles. Not a single fan was allowed into the ballpark to witness the game. The game was broadcasted, but it truly was a weird broadcast for a major league game.
Major League Baseball, the Baltimore Orioles, Chicago White Sox and the city of Baltimore went the safe route and played this game without an audience. Monday and Tuesday’s games were postponed as well for a doubleheader scheduled in late May.
Now why did this rare moment happen? If you haven’t heard, the city of Baltimore came apart at the seams Monday. A protest started after the funeral of a black man who died of a spinal cord injury while in police custody. Soon after the protest began, on live television, people began to throw many objects including rocks, bricks and anything they could get their hands on at police. That would turn into more violence and looting of local businesses which culminated in burning over a hundred vehicles and over a dozen buildings later that night.
I won’t divulge any further on that, but I do want to ask two simple questions.
Why would you destroy your own city?
What good can come from destroying your own city?
If anyone can honestly answer those two questions please do.
Back to the picture above. I don’t fault the Orioles or anyone else for not allowing anyone into the ballpark for this game. It’s just a sad state to see a sense of normalcy be torn apart for apparently no reason at all. I hope to never see another moment like this with a vacant ballpark on a perfect day for baseball.
The same goes for what happened the night of April 27, 2015 in Baltimore, Maryland. The more we fall into chaos, the farther we go into darkness.
I went to a baseball game a week after September 11, 2001 to get my mind on something else for a couple hours. Hardly anyone was there, but I felt like everything was going to be all right for those couple hours. Baltimore needed that today. It’s not for everyone, but it would have been nice to see the fans attend the game before they play three home games in Tampa Bay against the Rays this weekend.
The decision wasn’t that hard to make. However, baseball should keep this mind in the future to allow the fans and the city a chance to heal with an afternoon game of baseball.
It won’t solve any problems, but it can bring everyone together under one banner of rooting for the hometown team.