Ballparks are full of history. They each have thier own distinct features, The bricks and ivy in Wrigley, monument park and the mystique of Yankee stadium, the warehouse at Camden, the green monster at Fenway, and more, but when you go to a park its more than to see the game, its to take in the environment. As much as I dislike it, part of going to Turner is listening to the fans do that tommohawk chant. I also enjoy seeing the statues or plaques of players who have contributed to all that history.

Each ballpark also gives you a different perspective of the game. What might be a HR at one park is just a fly ball in another. The site lines, angles and views of a game vary from park to park, even if your sitting in the same general area. Also the in game extras , like the mascot races, or singing the stretch at Wrigley, Sweet Caroline at Fenway, or the 7th inning God Bless America at Yankee stadium.

Another great thing about parks is visiting the local bar near the stadium. Harry Carays and Murphy's in Chicago, Pickles in Baltimore, Hockeytown Cafe in Detroit, Hooters in Anaheim, Rock Bottom Brewery in Denver (and Cinci), Harpoon Brewery in Boston, and Billys sports bar in the Bronx.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Wrigley Field, 2011

This was the last game of our 4 game trip in 2011. This trip to Wrigley consisted of a tour of Wrigley and a game on the next day, which they won 4-3. The tour was great and I learned a couple of new things about Wrigley and Cubs history. The tour was on the 4th, the game on the 5th.

Wrigley Ivy
This was from the right field corner during the tour. Awesome to be that close to the ivy.
When down by home plate and the dugout I took a pic of my feet on the on deck circle. That was pretty cool too.

A pic of the LF foul pole on game day with the flags up and the beautiful sky above.

Chris grabbed a small piece of ivy and we saved a couple of leaves from it. I didnt have the guts to do it, so I guess you have to leave it to the 18 year old.

Wrigley Field
Both days weather was awesome. The day of the tour started out a bit overcast but the sun came out just as it started. Taking pics in the locker room, dugout, and on the field was awesome, but the pics of the scoreboard and bleachers were better on game day, because they were filled with fans and the flags were all up.

Wrigley Scoreboard
We hung out a bit at Murphy's, across from Wrigley before the game on Friday. It only made sense with an Irish Yankee fan with us!

I got pics of the Billy Williams statue this year. The Ron Santo statue will be up on the 11th and we missed it by less than a week. I had this planned by the time I knew about it, but I love an excuse to go back. I got more pics of the Ernie and Harry statues, but I have them on my last Cubs post.

Billy Williams Statue

Thursday, August 4, 2011

U.S. Cellular Field, 2011


U.S. Cellular Ballpark

This was the 3rd game of our 4 game trip in 2011. The trip to The Cell was great. The weather was beautiful and it was a good game. The Yanks won 10-5. Shawn was a bit paranoid about the reputation the park has, especially going in his Yankee gear, but it was smooth and everyone seemed very friendly.

Chris took pics of the bricks with all the Sox logos, so I made a collage of it. pretty cool.

The scoreboard here is pretty cool, it surrounds the whole back of the park, which makes sense in this part of town, because there is no skyline. It is mostly set up digitally now with the exception of one board in LC field. It is nice, but I have seen alot more impressive out there.

One screwed up thing about this park is that if you buy upper deck seats, you cannot leave the upper deck. We like to walk around the parks and see the different views and with that crazy rule, you cannot do that. We got lower level seats and they were great. There doesn't seem to be a bad seat in the park.

Here is another statue of liberty from the 08 All-Star game. I have seen these at alot of parks now.

Here is a collage of the statues from U.S. Cellular. They are from the top left clockwise, Walter Pierce, Minnie Minoso, Harold Baines, Nellie Fox, Luis Aparicio, Frank Thomas, and last but not least, the one who I think was the greatest Sox player ever, Carlton Fisk.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Miller Park, 2011

miller park
This was game 2 of our 4 game trip in 2011. Miller Park was a pretty sweet park inside and out. The roof was open on a nice day and it was packed due to an event for kids and the stadium was filled with them. It was a good time with the exception of getting out of the parking lot after the game.
One negative about the park is the way they set up the outfield seats. There are a lot of blind spots from them and almost no standing room at all. You would think that as a newer park they would have planned that out better. We sat in the LF bleachers and there were 2 HR's right in front of us that we didn't see go over the wall because it was blocked by the edge.
One thing I always said I'd do, when I finally came to Milwaukee, was to have a sausage at the game. And yes, I did, and if you go you should to. It was great and anyplace that has 8' sausages running around must have pretty good ones.

miller park

miller park
I was looking forward to seeing Bernie Brewer do his trip down the slide after a home run. Well I got to see that! There were multiple homers in a slug fest that the Brewers won 10-5 over the Cards. I didn't get great shots of him, but it was still cool, and unique to this park. Besides most of the HR were against the Cards, so how can you not enjoy that!

Here is Chris posin' with the sausage. After getting a pic with the Bratwurst sausage, I had to have one in the park. The other guys had them too. They give you a brat and a huge order of fries for a decent price.

sausage races
One other thing I was looking forward to here was the sausage races. We got lucky before the game and the Bratwurst was cruising through the parking lot and we got some pics with him. The Bratwurst won the race as well. I was hoping for a wipe out or something, but no such luck that day. It was still cool, and better than most of the other mascot races I've seen.

sausage races

hank aaron
Robin yount
Here are the player statues at Miller. They are Robin Yount and Hank Aaron, from his days as a Milwaukee Brave, and he also finished his career as a Brewer. The other 2 statues were not players they were of Bud Selig and a dedication statue to the workers that built the field. There was also a Statue of Liberty from the 08' All-Star game and Mickey from the 10' All-Star game there.

Miller park statue

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Comerica Park, 2011


This was the 1st of our 4 game trip in 2011. After living in Detroit for 2 years, and not once going to Tiger Stadium, making it here is kind of bittersweet. The park was beautiful and the Tigers won 6-5 in a kind of sloppy game. It rained lightly on and off all night, but the temperature was cool and it was nice besides that. We ate at Hockeytown Cafe before the game, which was pretty good, It was like a Hard Rock for Redwings & Tigers. If I was a fan of those teams, I would probably have enjoyed it more, but the food was good and it wasn't too pricey.

The walk up to the park is really cool. The big tiger in the middle and the others stalking on the roof give a great feel to the park. The huge baseball bats and all the small ones used as columns is unique as well. Overall a great entrance to a park, one of the best I have seen.

The view through the outfield here was pretty sweet. There is nothing better than a downtown ballpark with a skyline view. At night there were only a few buildings lit up, and with no moon and being overcast, it was just black out there, but on a clear night it probably looks good as well.

The scoreboard here is pretty basic, but it blends in with the park well. The tigers on the top add what it needs to make it fit this park, both the actual tigers on each side, and the team name. The lights incorporated into it is nicely done as well. Also, I never noticed it before while watching on TV, but the tiger growl that is played over the loudspeaker every time they score. That's pretty cool, unless your a fan of the other team.

The statues here are set up kind of weird, but also very nice. When you are walking around them wanting take pics of them, they are very tight to the railing and facing the field so it was a challenge to get a good pic. But, when you are looking out at the area from another part of the park, the numbers/names are on the outfield wall and the statue right above it looking onto the field. It is really set up pretty nice, I just like getting pics so I am a bit picky. I have all 6 of them in the collage above, you might need to click on the pic to see them up close.
They are clockwise from the left, Al Kaline, Charlie Gehringer, Willie Horton, Hal Newhouser, Hank Greenberg and on the bottom left is Ty Cobb.

tigers statues

The 3 of us at the first game of the trip.

These are the statues from the All-Star games in 08' and 10'. The Yankees started this in NY in 08, and Anahiem did it with team themed Mickeys in 10' and the D-Backs did cactus statues in 11', but I haven't seen one of them in person.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Nationals Park, 2011

nationals park
I went here in June 2011. On the way to Chris's graduation in NY, we spent a couple days in DC, and caught a game here while at it. This was a day game and was very overcast. It was inter league time. They were playing the Seattle Mariners and won 1-0 on a 9th inning walk-off single. The Nats were in the process of one of their best streaks since being in Washington, like 18 of 20, and when I got back to the hotel later Jim Wriggleman stepped down as manager. Something to do with his contract, but still weird.

nationals park
We will hit this park again on a future trip with Shawn, but this one was with my wife. I knew I would be driving through the area, the Nats were at home, so I wasn't gonna pass it up. The scoreboard is really nice here. It is probably even more impressive at night or at least on a day that isn't overcast. The park doesn't seem to have a bad seat in it.

nationals park
This is the Red Porch and Red Loft restaurant and bar in CF. Since there is nothing to eat around the outside of the park, and I mean nothing, we had lunch at the porch when the gates opened. It was good food and reasonably priced, especially for a ballpark. Being that the park has been open since 08', you would think they had a few places to grab a bite outside the park. NOT!

nationals park

nationals park
One thing I was looking forward to was the "Presidents race". Alot of people consider these things cheesy, but I think it gives each park a bit of personality.
At Nats park, the presidents walk around the park before the game and during the game as well, which is really cool. They were at the CF gate when the gates opened and were walking around. My wife wouldn't go near them, she was a bit freaked out. They are over 8' tall so I guess I understand. Supposedly, Teddy R has never won a race, and he had the lead more than half way through, and then he looked like he just ran out of gas. I got pics of all of them up close, but only put Teddy in the post.

nationals park
The Nationals do not have a lot of history in DC, but do have their former namesake for history, but unfortunately most of the HOF players from the Expos made their name in other cities.
The following statues at Nationals park are of players from former teams that played in Washington like the Senators.
Frank Howard- Senators

nationals park
Joshua Gibson- Wasnington Grays- Negro League

nationals park
Walter Johnson- Washington Nationals 1920-27

nationals park

Friday, May 13, 2011

Turner Field, 2011

My last regular season game of 2011. Going to try to hit a playoff game if the Braves make it in, which they should. It was "Star Wars night" at Turner tonite. This was my last game with Chris also, and it was a bit chilly, 60 by game end. The Mets won 12-2, and it could have been worse. There were 20 hits by the Mets. Below, on the scoreboard, is David Wright as Darth Vader and he was very evil tonite going 3-5 with 2 HR and 6 RBI.

We went to the Braves museum for the 1st time. It was pretty cool. Dont know why I never went in all the trips to Turner, but it was fun to do before the game. I took a few pics, and below is one of the old uniforms from when they were the Boston Braves. The Braves blew a 5-0 lead to lose 8-6 to the Dodgers.

The Bravos won this one on a 11th inning walk-off, 2-1, after winning the previous night with a 9th inning comeback. Martin Prado hit a single and pushed Brooks Conrad across for the winning run. If only the Giants could score a couple of runs.

The Cubs game was also Bobby Cox's Jersey retirement night. This was pretty cool to be at. I only wanted to see the Cubs, but this added to the experience.

This is Bobby Cox's # after the ceremony.

They had the field painted for the Ceremony and game.
The Chik-fila cow with another new saying.

Oh, thats right, the Cubs were here too. Well, at least in uniform, they got blown out 10-4, out hit the Braves and got killed. Typical Cubs.

I went to this game with my future brother in-law Justin. I won these tickets through work, and they are great seats, about 20 rows right behind the Braves dugout. This is the first MLB game I've been to in 2011. I will be going to many more this summer with the trip and the Cubs here in August. Phils beat the Braves 5-4.

Turner field
This is also the first game I have gone to with my DSLR camera. Fun stuff. Cant wait to take it on the road trip!

Turner field
The Braves statue of liberty that was from the 2008 all-star game at Yankee Stadium. Each team had one and I believe they took them back to thier own parks. I saw the one in KC last year, I will have to start looking for these. There is also a Mickey Mouse from the all-star game in 2010 in Anaheim. Kinda cool.

Turner field

The Bud pavillion. I have hung in there a couple of times, although it is tough to watch the game from in there. Below is the Chik-Fila cow and Coke bottle. They change the cow's sign alot. There are some older pics of it in my older Braves posts.

Turner field