As summer heats up and baseball season hits full swing in the coming months, more Orioles fans will have a chance to go to Camden Yards and see the team in person.
After two months of operating Oriole Park at a quarter of its capacity for 45,971 fans, the team announced Thursday there will no longer be any capacity restrictions beginning with its June 1 game against the Minnesota Twins and continuing for the rest of the season.
“That’s great news for everybody,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “It does mean that we’re slowly but surely getting back to normal, which is a great feeling. I’m excited to see more fans in the ballpark.”
Single-game tickets for the rest of the season will be on sale Wednesday, May 26.
The city’s mask mandate remains in place for venues such as Camden Yards, and the team will also require masks at the ballpark. For fans who want to socially distance, pod seating will continue to be offered in some parts of the ballpark.
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While capacity restrictions are lifted, the club said it will continue to use digital ticketing and cashless transactions exclusively, and bags are not permitted in the ballpark with the exception of medically necessary items and clutch purses.
When the Orioles announced their plan for fans to return in March, they left open the possibility of revising capacity limitsas public health and government guidance changed. They only offered tickets through their Memorial Day matinee on May 31 against the Twins to allow them flexibility to get more fans into the ballpark later in the season.
When the city increased capacity for outdoor venues amid a wider reopening last week, the team was targeting this week as a time to announce an expansion of capacity in conjunction with the latest guidance to keep fans safe.
Through the first two months of the season, the Orioles have operated at 25% capacity despite the state allowing up to 50% capacity. That’s meant approximately 11,000 tickets on sale each night, though for some games with less demand, the team has not sold some of the left field upper reserve sections and instead priced upper-deck seats closer to home plate at that lower price range, giving fans better value for those seats.
Attendance, considering the capacity limitations, has been solid. All three weekend games against the New York Yankees were announced as sellouts, giving them five in 21 home dates — with two single-admission midweek doubleheaders mixed in. Their 150,305 fans so far give them an average of 7,729 fans per date.
On the field, the Orioles are among the growing number of teams who have had their COVID-19 health and safety protocols relaxed by reaching an 85% vaccination rate among players, field staff, and those personnel who interact with them.
That means, among other things, that masks are no longer required in the dugout and weight room, and restrictions on where they can go and who can travel with them on the road are lifted.