It is both the most inviting target and the most iconic backdrop in all of baseball. It is also a singular landmark of the sport.
Simply put, there is no Camden Yards without the B&O Warehouse looming high over the right-field fence at Oriole Park, providing a red-brick backdrop unlike any other on the Major League circuit. When it opened in 1992, Oriole Park at Camden Yards inspired a new generation of destination ballparks, and the warehouse was a big reason why.
To this day, it remains the park’s signature feature, and something fans travel from far and wide to see. Here is everything you need to know about the Oriole Park at Camden Yards warehouse:
What is the history?
Constructed between 1899 and 1905 by the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad to serve the historic Camden Station, the warehouse today stretches 1,016 feet long, just 51 feet wide and stands eight stories high. It holds about 430,000 square feet of space. It is the longest brick building on the East Coast, according to the Orioles.
It was used as storage for B&O through the 1960s and was reportedly able to hold 1,000 carloads of freight at the height of its use. But the warehouse was largely abandoned by the '70s, then repurposed and incorporated into Camden Yards when the stadium opened in ’92.
What is its current function?
The warehouse is home to the Orioles’ executive and ticket offices, stadium authority, Dempsey’s Brew Pub and Restaurant, tech startup OptioLabs Inc., banquet facilities and the O’s official team store. Several other gameday vendors lining Eutaw Street reside in a 60-foot-wide promenade that runs between the warehouse and Oriole Park.
Though the Orioles have been purposeful about keeping the warehouse ad-free for years, they have used it to serve additional decorative functions for major events. The most famous example is Cal Ripken Jr.’s historic 2131st consecutive game in 1995.
How far away from home plate is it?
The warehouse sits approximately 60 feet beyond the right-field wall. It is listed as standing 439 feet from home plate at its closest point, behind the right-field foul pole.
Has any hitter ever reached it on a fly?
One. Ken Griffey Jr. is the only player to hit the warehouse, achieving the feat during the 1993 Home Run Derby. That blast was measured at 465 feet.
Others have reportedly done so during batting practice, including Sam Horn, Jason Giambi, David Ortiz and Chris Davis.
No player has ever reached the warehouse on a fly during game action. But its bottom floor is lined with 63 shatter-proof windows in case that changes.
Has anyone else ever come close?
101 players have reached Eutaw Street during game action, including 46 Orioles. Davis is the all-time leader, with 11 Eutaw Street home runs.
The farthest homer ever hit onto Eutaw Street traveled 443 feet, hit by Expos outfielder Henry Rodriguez off Scott Kamieniecki on June 17, 1997. But Rodriguez hit his to right-center, where the warehouse tails away from the field, parallel to the right-field fence.
Any homer hit to right at Oriole Park must also clear a 20-foot-high scoreboard along the right-field fence, requiring additional distance to reach the warehouse. Former Astros slugger Lance Berkman is credited with coming the closest in game action, on a home run that traveled an estimated 430 feet.