Since I live in Michigan and cannot attend many games at lovely Camden Yards, Comerica Park is where I am forced to watch most Orioles games. I have been to almost half of the ballparks now and it still ranks as one of my favorites. On a rare warm and sunny spring day when the center field wall is all covered in ivy and the fountains are going the view of the downtown skyline is beautiful. My favorite features at Comerica though are the stone tigers perched all along the outer wall of the stadium like gargoyles and the fact that it is the friendliest of all the ballparks that I have been to so far for autograph seekers. Other positives are that traffic before games is usually not too bad (Tiger fans tend to arrive late.) and finding a place to park is easy (although being Detroit, some of the lots are a little sketchy.).
The downside of Comerica Park is the food, which is bad in my opinion. There are a lot of bars in the area, however, as well as Cheli’s Chili Bar (Owned by former Red Wing Chris Chelios) right next door and Hockeytown Cafe (fun place to watch a hockey or baseball game) across the street. As the ballpark is located in the arts and entertainment district, there are several theatres and concert venues in the area too, which make it a good starting point for touring Detroit. As far as the fans go, most mind their own business; they aren’t mean, but not particularly friendly either. They don’t get into the game the way people do in St. Louis, Baltimore, or even Texas, but it’s still a nice place to watch a ballgame.
I have many good memories of going to games in Detroit, watching the Orioles celebrate after sweeping the Tigers in the 2014 ALDS was and is and will always be very special, but probably my favorite memory of watching the Orioles in Detroit is their game last July in which Chris Tillman out-dueled David Price. I took my mom and we went early to watch the Orioles batting practice. While I hung out at the dugout, my mom went and found our seats behind the bullpen in left field. Jonathan Schoop came over to sign for the Oriole fans and while he did that Machado continued with batting practice. When I returned to our seats my mom showed me the home run ball she had just caught! As it turned out, this was a sign of good things to come.
The game started out inauspiciously enough. Tillman gave up a single to Ian Kinsler on the very first pitch of the game and then walked the ever dangerous Victor Martinez before working his way out of the jam. At that point, we were pretty nervous, expecting the game to go back and forth. Thankfully, Tillman settled down and there was very little drama the rest of the night.
David Price pitched well right from the start, but the Orioles were patient at the plate for once and that patience paid off in the third inning when Machado hit a solo home run that was a few inches too high for me to catch. That home run ended up being all the Orioles would need, although they scored twice more later in the game. Tillman matched Price pitch for pitch all night, going on to strike out eight over eight innings (every Tiger except Jose Iglesias struck out once.). Price struck out twelve over seven, but it wasn’t enough because the Orioles still walked off the field 3-0 winners.