Baseball stadiums

Baseball and football—not necessarily in that order—are my favorite sports. I root for the Yankees in baseball, and the Giants in football. While I always root for my teams to win, I really can watch any two teams play and enjoy the game, especially if it’s a good one. Watching on TV is nice, but watching from the stands is a grander experience. And, it’s not that I get to a lot of games every year, but I do get to them whenever and wherever I can. In one of my very first posts, I mentioned liking lists. I have what I think is a pretty nice list crawling to completion in terms of the stadiums in both sports that I have visited. I’m focusing on baseball here, and skipping football, which I will revisit when helmets and pads start colliding.

In baseball, I have been to 28 different stadiums. That needs to be qualified a bit, as I have only seen 21 of the 30 teams play in their home ballparks (I’ve seen the Yankees, Mets, Orioles, Phillies, Indians, Brewers, and Giants in both their current and previous stadiums). Further, five teams have replaced their stadium since I visited (the Cardinals, Nationals, Reds, Tigers, and Twins), and I’m hoping to watch a game from each of their new stomping grounds over the next few years. If I want to confuse things some more, I could mention my very first Yankee game, whose home games were played in Shea in 1974 and 1975, but this is not figured into my totals.

As for some quick random thoughts about baseball parks, I would mention the following.
-I made it to Fenway in 1991. The old parks—Fenway Park, Wrigley Field, and Tiger Stadium, and of course Yankee Stadium—are way up on my list of favorites. Regarding Tiger Stadium, a buddy and I went there the last year it was open, which was a definite highlight. Conversely, I regret not making it to the original Comiskey Park or Three Rivers Stadium.
-In 1999, I was in Atlanta for a meeting, with a tight schedule of visiting some Civil War sites to the north and west of town set for when business concluded (…and Civil War battlefields are totally post-worthy, btw…). I thus failed to take advantage of the fact that the Yankees were coming to town on the day I had to leave. Seeing a Braves home game is still on the to-do list.
-I kind of, sort of regret not seeing an Expos home game before they moved south of the border.
-I first went to Camden Yards for an Orioles game in 1993, and remember that ballpark and its setting as fondly as any. In general, the ballparks in downtown areas—including those of the Giants, Mariners, and of course the Yankees—appeal to me more than those in remoter areas.
-I do not miss any of the “cookie cutter” stadiums.
-I simply struggle to keep up with the corporate names of these ballparks.

Anyway, I’m not in a big hurry to visit every stadium, but I try to get to one or two new ones in either sport each year. In fact, those numbers I mentioned in the second paragraph will climb a bit over the next few weeks and hopefully some more throughout the season.

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