Posts tagged Baltimore Elite Giants

Can Redevelopment of Westport Waterfront Save Al Kaline’s Boyhood Home?

Albert William “Al” Kaline was born in Baltimore in 1934 and raised in Westport, an area of the city just south of the intersection of I-95 and I-295. Kaline is one of two baseball Hall of Famers born in Baltimore, the other one being, of course, Babe Ruth.

Westport is notable in Baltimore baseball history not only as Kaline’s hometown, but as home in 1950 to the Negro American League Baltimore Elite Giants. Westport Stadium, once located just southeast of the intersection of I-295 and Annapolis Road, hosted not only Negro League baseball, but also was home to some of Baltimore’s first NASCAR events.

Cedley Street, The Block Where Hall of Famer Al Kaline Grew Up

On a recent trip to Westport in search of the Elite Giant’s former home ballpark, I stopped in front of 2222 Cedley Street to take pictures of the house where Kaline once lived. The white-painted brick house is currently boarded up. A key box hanging on the front door knob suggests that it is either soon to be on the market or perhaps under renovation.

2222 Cedley Street - Boyhood Home of Al Kaline

For the past decade or so there has been talk of redeveloping Westport’s waterfront to include new office space, hotel rooms, retail, and residential units. Over the years those plans have hit a variety of snags and delays, however, redevelopment seems all but inevitable. The area in Westwood projected for redevelopment is just a long fly ball from Kaline’s former home.

Westport Waterfront - Just a Couple Blocks North of Kaline's Former Home

Given the current state of 2222 Cedley Street, and the chance for a nearby neighborhood renaissance, hopefully those planning Westport’s revitalized waterfront appreciate the history of that house and will find a way to insure it is part of Westport’s future.

Touring The Lost Ballparks of Baltimore

Looking for a baseball fix this off-season? Can’t get enough of the Baltimore Orioles? Read on.

While conducting research for my book Deadball, A Metaphysical Baseball Novel I became quite familiar with the lost ballpark sites of Baltimore, including Union Park, home of the 1890’s world champion National League Baltimore Orioles, and American League Park, home of the 1901-02 American League Baltimore Orioles and the 1903-1914 International League Orioles – including Babe Ruth (a previous ballpark known as Oriole Park once sat at the same location as American League Park and was where the American Association Baltimore Orioles played from 1890 until May 1891). Union Park and American League Park were located just four blocks apart, Union Park at the southwest corner of East 25th Street and Guilford Avenue, and American League Park at the southwest corner of East 29th Street and Greenmount Avenue.

Baltimore's Union Park

In addition to Union Park and American League Park, two other ballparks were once located nearby. Terrapin Park (also known as Oriole Park), home of the 1914-15 Federal League Terrapins, the International League Orioles, and the 1938-1944 Negro American League Baltimore Elite Giants, was located directly across the street from American League Park at the northwest corner of East 29th Street and Greenmount. Memorial Stadium (and its earlier incarnation known as Municipal Stadium) home of the International League Orioles (1944-1953) and the “new” American League Orioles (1954-1991) was located .7 miles north and east of American League Park on 33rd Street.

Over the past few years, I occasionally have given tours of the old ballpark sites to die-hard Orioles fans and history buffs. This fall, I continued that tradition. In October, Bruce Brown, a friend and fellow SABR member toured the sites of Union Park, American League Park, and Terrapin Park.

Bruce Brown Standing in the Approximate Location of American League Park's Home Plate

And most recently, this past November, I made the same trek to Baltimore with friend and fellow author Austin Gisriel (Safe at Home, A Season in the Valley). Austin and I also toured the former site of Memorial Stadium, which Austin chronicled on the SABR blog Seamheads (see

Author Austin Gisriel at the Former Site of Union Park. The Building in the Background Once Sat Just To the Right of Union Park's Third Base Side Grandstand (see above picture of Union Park)

If you are interested in a tour of these sites, let me know. Just send me a comment to this posting (you may need to click on the title to this post – “Touring The Lost Ballparks of Baltimore” and scroll to the bottom of the page for the reply option) or send me a note on my facebook page – David B. Stinson. If there is enough interest, I’ll arrange a tour. With winter soon upon us, a tour of Baltimore’s lost ballpark sites could provide that much needed off-season baseball fix. In the meantime, below are four entries from my companion blog with pictures and information about these lost ballpark sites. Enjoy!

Union Park

American League Park

Terrapin Park/Oriole Park

Memorial Stadium

Go O’s!