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Ground Rules

Oriole Park's unique dimensions are designed to maximize every aspect of watching -- and playing -- America's Pastime. Please observe the following ground rules.

  • Oriole Park Ground Rules

    Foul poles with screens attached are outside of playing field.

    Thrown or fairly batted ball that remains behind or under the canvas or canvas holder: 2 BASES

    Ball rebounding in playing field: IN PLAY

    Ball striking surfaces, pillars or facings surrounding the dugout: IN DUGOUT

    Ball striking railings around photographer's booths: IN PLAY

    Fair bounding ball striking railings above cement wall down right field line: OUT OF PLAY

    Fly ball hitting the grounds crew shed roof in right field and bouncing back into play: HOME RUN


  • Universal Ground Rules

    • Ball on the top step (lip) of the dugout is in play. No equipment is permitted to be left on the top step (lip) of the dugout. If a ball hits equipment left on the top step it is dead.
    • A player is not permitted to step or go into a dugout to make a catch.
    • A player is permitted to reach into a dugout to make a catch. If a player makes a catch outside the dugout and the player's momentum carries him into the dugout, then the catch is allowed and the ball remains alive as long as the player does not fall while in the dugout. See Rule 6.05(a).
    • A batted ball in flight can be caught between or under railings and around screens.
    • A catch may be made on the field tarp.
    • Batted or thrown ball resting on the rotating signage behind home plate or along first base or third base stands is in play.
    • The facings of railings surrounding the dugout and photographers' areas are in play.
    • Any cameras or microphones permanently attached on railings are treated as part of the railings and are in play.
    • Any recessed railings or poles that are in the dugout and photographers' areas are out of play and should be marked with red to mark them out of play.
    • Robotic cameras attached to the facing of the backstop screen are considered part of the screen.
    • A batted ball striking the backstop camera is considered a dead ball.
    • A thrown ball striking the backstop camera is considered in play.
    • A ball striking the guy wires that support the backstop is a dead ball.
    • A ball lodging behind or under canvas on field tarp is out of play.
    • A ball striking the field tarp and rebounding onto the playing field is in play.
    • No chairs can be brought out of the dugout or bullpen and onto the playing field.
    • All yellow lines are in play.

    Official Ground Rules >>

  • Oriole Park Dimensions

    For Camden Yards' first nine seasons, outfield dimensions were 333 feet to left field, 364 feet to left center, 400 feet to center, 373 feet to right center and 318 feet to right. Prior to the 2001 season, in conjunction with extensive renovations to the ballpark's playing surface and drainage system, the Orioles reconfigured the ballpark with outfield dimensions that were up to 7 feet larger than those used since Camden Yards opened in 1992. However, it was found that the new dimensions did not significantly improve sight lines for fans, as had been anticipated, and adversely affected the viewing angle of the batter's eye wall.

    As a result, the ballpark was returned to its original dimensions before the 2002 season. The changes included moving home plate approximately seven feet closer to the outfield, to its original spot 45 feet from the backstop. In addition, the entire field was shifted several degrees to the first base side and both the left field and right field foul poles were repositioned to their original locations. The foul line measurements decreased from 320 feet to 318 feet in right field and from 337 to 333 feet in left field. The center field distance decreased from 406 to 400 feet and the deepest part of the ballpark, in left center field, decreased from 417 to 410 feet.

    The shorter distance to the right field corner than down the left field line is compensated