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.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Wrigley Field, 2014

This is the 100 Anniversary of Wrigley Field, and since I haven't been since 2011, I figured it would be a good excuse to make a trip up there. 
On the way up from Atlanta, I stopped at the Louisville Slugger Museum and did the tour. They happened to be making the bats for the All-Star game that day. The tour was short but interesting. I don't feel like it needs to have its own post, so I am just gonna work it into here. 

I also stopped in Indy and stayed there for the night, so why not catch a AAA game while there. The Indians, who by the way are the Pirates affiliate, were home and playing the Columbus Clippers. It was a very nice park for a AAA park. It was also Star Wars night at the park. 

On to Wrigley. I got to Chicago around 9 a.m. and was gonna take the train into Wrigley from the Midway Airport, but as I got into the City, the rains came hard. I pulled into a parking lot and sat there for about 2 hours hoping this would blow over. The storm was a huge blob on the radar, but moving quickly. Well I decided to go to the train and head into Wrigleyville and if it got rained out, then I would just hang there and do whatever. As I got to Addison on the red line, it was dissipating. I got off and started walking around Wrigleyville and there was 3 hours until game time, so I went to the Cubby Bear and got an Italian Beef sandwich, since in Atlanta there is no one with one on their menu. 

After that I cruised around the outside and saw the Ron Santo statue. This went up a week after I was at here in 2011. I had seen all the others, but not this one. 

They also have murals on the walls surrounding the park. This is just one example, which is from the 1910's. Each one represents a decade in the 100 years. 

Castro and Rizzo going to the batting cage under the bleachers. They didn't do BP because of the rain. 

I sat in the bleachers for the first time. I wanted to do this a few times, but never got around to it. It is nice because you can move around as long as there is room. I sat in right field to start, then moved to left then sat under the scoreboard for a bit. 

This is Arismendy Alcantara. He is a call up from the AAA squad this week and could be key in our future. He is tearing it up in his first 4 games, but we all know that's only 4 games. He is our 4th best prospect and the others will be up by the end of the year or to start 2015. 

Edwin Jackson started for the Cubs. Do I need to say more. He gave up 9 ER in under 4 innings. Considering we lost 11-6, if he would have been just his normal bad self we might have had a chance. 

Here is a pic from the train station.