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Baltimore Orioles (AA)

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The Baltimore Orioles were a franchise in the American Association from 1882-1891, the full time of the AA's run as a major league.

Ballparks: Newington Park (May 9-September 30, 1882); Oriole Park I (May 1, 1883-October 10, 1889); Oriole Park II (May 1890-May 9, 1891); Oriole Park III (May 11, 1891-end of 1891 season)

The Baltimore Orioles were one of the founding franchises in the American Association. They were originally known as the Baltimore Lord Baltimores for the inaugural season. The Orioles nickname came into use for the 1883 season. After eight mediocre seasons in the American Association, the team dropped down to the Atlantic Association for the 1890 season. When their replacement franchise, the Brooklyn Gladiators, folded in mid-season, the Orioles rejoined the American Association on August 3rd and finished out the Gladiators season. When the American Association folded following the 1891 season, the Orioles were one of four teams to join the National League.

Baltimore was considered a particularly rowdy town in those years, and the atmosphere around the team was rather charged. Players were known for their drinking binges going on late into the night, newspapers covering the team openly disparaged it, and the fans were unpredictable, forcing ownership to install a barbed wire fence to protect players and umpires from the crowd at Oriole Park following a particularly violent incident involving umpire Jack Brennan in 1884.

Sources:

[edit] Further Reading

  • Frederick G. Lieb: The History of a Colorful Team in Baltimore and St. Louis, G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1955.
  • Marty Payne: "Beer Tanks and Barbed Wire: Bill Barnie and Baltimore", in The Baseball Research Journal, SABR, Volume 42, Number 1 (Spring 2013), pp. 25-29.
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