Before I start complaining, let me admit my own bit of the problem. I'm slipping on attendance. 04 & 05 I started the season with Spring Training visits. 06 I didn't get out until the Nats/O's exhibition two days before Opening Day, and I felt late. Then last year, I didn't get to the park until 3rd week of April. This year, I didn't make it until yesterday -- IN MAY. Birdland won't be it's true self until all the folks who feel hardcore inside are outside -- taking the air in the stands at OPACY.
That said, I was admiring the new scoreboards yesterday. You can, like, read what they say -- even in daylight at a bad angle (looking up from Eutaw Street Reserves). A big step forward, I think and then ... Kiss Cam. I can't believe I'm actually watching this nonsense at my home park. Let 'em do that crap in DC, I've believed in years past, but not HERE. At first I'm encouraged by the lack of response. We want sports trivia between innings, or least cartoon hot dogs running the bases -- something remotely baseball. Right? Then, some fools actually smooch. The cheer is louder than when Adam Jones' shot cleared the left field wall. Ugh. That cheer is real crowd noise too.
I know pumped in crowd noise has been around since the 90s, but the park management needs to do something about it now. Blended into real crowd noise, you don't notice so much. In the quiet, empty place right now, the sudden bursts of shrill screaming are just plain disconcerting. So obvious. So WEAK. It's enough to inspire your offense to only get three hits. Create excitement on the field, don't try to manufacture it in the PA. Do laugh tracks make bland sitcoms funny? C'mon.
In good news, the Orioles Hall of Fade is again a Hall of Fame -- brand new plaques behind the scoreboard. You can actually read Al Bumbry's inscription again. That's the deal. That's Birdland. Honor the tradition and do the hard, smart organizational work to recreate it between the lines. Whoever in the Warehouse approves tarting up Birdland with the other stuff can kiss somethin' you can't show on the Jumbotron.