Zach Wilt: It’s time for All-Star Game to return to Camden Yards

Yesterday on Twitter, the Orioles shared one of my favorite moments from Camden Yards history. It’s hard to believe, but 25 years ago Ken Griffey Jr. hit the Warehouse during the Home Run Derby in Baltimore. It’s one of my favorite moments in the ballpark’s history and one that hasn’t been duplicated all these years later.

Griffey’s shot traveled 465 feet into right field perfectly smacking the bottom of the Warehouse on the fly. “Wind blown,” the young Griffey laughed when talking about the shot after taking his hacks during the derby round. Wind blown or not, no one has been able to accomplish that feat in the more than 2,000 games played at the ballpark. I wonder if anyone ever will.

Since 1992, 96 home runs have been hit on to Eutaw Street. 55 have been hit by opponents, while 41 have been hit by the Orioles. Most recently, Chris Davis reached Eutaw Street with a 401 foot homer on June 27. It was Davis’s 11th homer hit to Eutaw Street, making him the all-time leader.

Griffey’s famous homer and the looming All-Star game festivities set for next week in Washington, D.C., have me longing to see the Midsummer Classic return to Baltimore. It’s been 25 years since Charm City hosted the All-Star Game and it’s my belief that it’s time for the game to once again be hosted by the Orioles. Camden Yards was the venue that forever changed the modern baseball stadium. It was showcased a year after its opening and over the last two and half decades it has undergone some great renovations that are deserving of it being displayed once again.

As I am sure you are well aware, the Nationals will be hosting this summer’s All-Star Game for the first time in Nationals Park since it opened in 2008. It’s Washington’s first time hosting the game since 1969 and the city’s fifth time hosting it in history. Next season, the Indians will host for the second time at Progressive Field and their sixth time in franchise history. The Tribe last hosted in 1997 and no team has hosted the game more than Cleveland. In 2020, the All-Star game heads out west to be hosted by the Dodgers. L.A. last hosted in 1980 at Dodger Stadium and has had the event in its hometown twice prior.

Major League Baseball is expected to announce the 2021 All-Star Game host city in April 2019. Traditionally, they have switched between American League and National League teams. However, the Nationals are the fourth consecutive NL team to host the game. The last AL team to host was the Twins in 2014.

It’s time for the All-Star Game to be hosted by an AL city and I can think of no better fit than Baltimore. After having the game on the West Coast in 2021, it makes sense for it to come back east. We will be two years removed from neighboring Washington having the game and 28 years since the game was last in Baltimore.

Camden Yards is universally loved across baseball and having it showcased during the All-Star Game is an honor the stadium and the Orioles franchise deserve. The ballpark that did so much to influence baseball is a place that has proven to be a spectacle during big games and a fantastic place to host a Home Run Derby. Hopefully, MLB makes the right call next April and brings the game back to Baltimore in 2021.

Zach Wilt blogs about the Orioles at Baltimore Sports Report. Follow him on Twitter: @zach_wilt. His views appear here as part of MASNsports.com’s season-long initiative of welcoming guest bloggers to our pages. All opinions expressed are those of the guest bloggers, who are not employed by MASNsports.com but are just as passionate about their baseball as our roster of writers.

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