Orioles announce Opening Day plans

Per a team release…

*To allow fans the opportunity to experience the excitement of Opening Day, the entire ballpark will open at noon on Monday. Each fan will receive a 2014 schedule/car magnet at the gates. Roving musical groups will entertain fans on Eutaw Street and the main concourses.

*Fans are encouraged to be in their seats by 2:30 p.m., when pre-game ceremonies will begin. MASN personality JIM HUNTER will serve as emcee for the pre-game festivities.

*In a continuation of the Opening Day tradition, Orioles players and coaches will be introduced prior to the game. Orioles players will run through the center field gate on an orange carpet and take their places between first and second base. Manager BUCK SHOWALTER, coaches and staff will be introduced from the Orioles dugout. Members of the Red Sox will be announced and will run from their dugout to line up between second and third base.

OriolesREACH has arranged for 80 youth from Fort Meade to line the orange carpet holding Orioles flags during player introductions. These children are the sons and daughters of some of Fort Meade’s 10,000 service members and nearly 50,000 employees from all branches of military service. Fort Meade is the Nation’s Preeminent Center for Information, Intelligence and Cyber Operations, and has a long-standing relationship with the Orioles.

For the 21st straight season, one fan will be chosen to represent all Orioles fans as the team’s “10th man.” The fan will be introduced as a part of the Orioles starting lineup during the pre-game ceremonies.

*American tenor RICHARD TROXELL will perform the National Anthem. Troxell, a native of Thurmont, Maryland, has an extensive resume of film and theater performance experience both in the United States and abroad. Troxell will also sing “God Bless America” during the seventh inning stretch. This year marks the ninth time he has performed the National Anthem on Orioles Opening Day.

During the anthem, a 30’ x 42’ Star-Spangled Banner Flag will be unfurled over the batter’s eye wall in center field. The Maryland Historical Society recreated the Star-Spangled Banner flag this past summer during the same six-week time period that MARY PICKERSGILL did 200 years ago. With the help of more than 250 experienced stitchers and over one thousand members of the public, Maryland Historical Society’s flag was pieced together utilizing the same techniques as found in the original Star-Spangled Banner that flew over Fort McHenry during the Battle of Baltimore in September of 1814.

Colors will be presented by both the United States Joint Armed Forces Color Guard, provided by the Military District of Washington, and the Fort McHenry Guard.

*Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, ADMIRAL JAMES A. WINNEFELD, JR. will throw out the ceremonial first pitch. Admiral Winnefeld is a United States Navy four-star admiral and the second highest-ranking military officer in the US Armed Forces.

*The Orioles will honor the 13 members of the Orioles family who passed away since last Opening Day during a pre-game video tribute. Special pregame ceremonies will recognize Orioles investor TOM CLANCY, Public Relations Director MONICA BARLOW, and former outfielder PAUL BLAIR, each of whom passed away since the end of the 2013 season.

Additionally, throughout the 2014 season, the club will wear a name patch on the right jersey sleeve for the Baltimore-born Clancy.

*Rawlings established the Rawlings Gold Glove Award in 1957 to recognize the best fielders at each position. The award has evolved into baseball’s greatest measure of defensive excellence. Every year, managers and coaches of each Major League Baseball team select a squad of the best defensive player at each position in their respective leagues, excluding their own teams.

In 2013, shortstop J.J. HARDY, center fielder ADAM JONES and third baseman MANNY MACHADO were named Gold Glove Award winners at their respective positions. It was the first award for Machado, second for Hardy and third for Jones. In a pre-game ceremony, STEVE COHEN from Rawlings will present all three with their Gold Glove Awards. Additionally, Machado will be presented with the Platinum Glove, given to the best individual defender in each league.

*In honor of the club’s 60th anniversary, the Orioles will wear a 60th anniversary logo patch on the right jersey sleeve for all games (above the Clancy patch). Additionally, for all home games, the Orioles will use special 60th anniversary logo baseballs.

*On Thursday, Silver Sluggers Adam Jones, Chris Davis and J.J. Hardy will be presented with their awards.

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