Thursday, December 4, 2014

Stadium #15: Comerica Park

I visited Comerica Park the day after my visit to Progressive Field during my All-American Roadtrip. Detroit is a mess, which shouldn't be a surprise to anyone, but the stadium area was just teeming with people on this game day afternoon. I'm glad it was an afternoon game though since I was in the city by myself and it has a rough reputation. But everything went fine!

The first thing I noticed about the ballpark is the plethora of tigers. They are all over the outside of the ballpark and it's a little weird but it looks awesome! 

Very intimidating tiger

I got the cheapest ticket I could, which is my normal strategy for random ballpark games, and found my seat. I had a pretty good view of the whole field! 


I struck up a conversation with the guy next to me, who turned out to be former Major League player Tom Ragland!! I wish I'd gotten a photo with him - he was really great. So friendly, so full of information, and just so happy to be at the ballpark watching his Tigers play. He even showed me his baseball card that he had in his wallet! It was a really great experience watching a ballgame with a former pro - I feel like I learned a lot about the way the game is played and also about the soul of baseball. He was really surprised that a girl from Louisiana was in Detroit alone to watch a baseball game, just to watch a game in a new ballpark. I think maybe he was also a bit impressed. 



This Detroit game went on FOREVER. It was easily the longest 9 inning game I've ever been to. Game time was 4 hours and 1 minute. I have no idea why it went so slow but it just dragged. I saw this game on Trade Deadline Day, and in the 7th, they stopped the game to pull Austin Jackson out of center field. I joked to Tom saying "he must have gotten traded" but it turns out he did get traded. Jackson and the day's starting pitcher Drew Smyly had both been traded in a 3 team deal


There's even tigers on the scoreboard!

I really enjoyed my game at Detroit even if it was 4 hours and I got sunburnt. It was a good end to the baseball part of my roadtrip!

Monday, September 29, 2014

Stadium #14: Progressive Field

On my All-American Roadtrip, I did lots of things including reaching the halfway point on my stadium tour! But before that, I went to Progressive Field for a game between the Cleveland Indians and the Seattle Mariners. And to boot, I got to see King Felix pitch which I wasn't expecting but it was definitely awesome!

Obligatory photo of me + the ballpark

I drove into Cleveland and stayed at a hotel downtown. Cleveland is really walkable, and I had a great time walking down to the lake and going to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame (which I'll write more about later). Cleveland was definitely very friendly, and the people I talked to at the stands were really fun too. 

View from my seat

I asked people what the iconic ballpark food was for Cleveland and somebody told me "You're in Cleveland, you know that right?" so I guess there is no iconic food. No Cleveland version of the Dodger Dog to be found here. But the stadium was nice, easy to get too, lots of parking, and right off the interstate. Also, this was the only ballpark I've ever been too that had metal detectors like at airports. That was unusual. I don't kno wif that's going to happen at all parks but it was a surprise to see. 

Panoramic of Progressive Field


Sunday, August 24, 2014

My All American Summer Roadtrip

Earlier this year I formulated a somewhat crazy plan, according to my friends. To me though it seemed normal, awesome, and as good a reason as ANY to take a ridiculous roadtrip! The plan all started because my favorite Braves Tom Glavine, Greg Maddux, and Bobby Cox were elected into the Baseball Hall of Fame. I've always wanted to go to Cooperstown for induction weekend so this was the best time to go when 3 Braves were being inducted.

Then, my awesome friends HB & MT (of Zimbabwe wedding fame) were holding their stateside reception the weekend after the HOF Induction in Ohio. So one weekend in NY for baseball, the next weekend in Ohio. It made zero sense to me to do that in 2 trips, and since I had just bought a new car, I decided to go on my first roadtrip with Rex (my car)!

Here's a brief overview of what went down, with blog posts to follow soon :)

Days 1-2: Driving up to Cooperstown
Day 3: Cooperstown, visited the Museum, ate pizza, wandered, saw famous ball players
Day 4: Induction Day!
Day 5: Drove to Niagara Falls and took in the sights
Day 6: Niagara Falls & walked to Canada because I could
Day 7: Drove to Cleveland, went to the Rock & Roll HOF, watched an Indians game
Day 8: Drove to Detroit, went to a Tigers game, and ended the day in Toledo
Day 9: Toledo and friends, and fun, and relaxation, and false starts at a tennis game
Day 10: Actually played tennis this time, and evening reception
Day 11: Drove home and remained sad about fun being over but excited that my new job would be starting the next day

I'll write more about each section of this adventure but here's the overview!

Friday, August 22, 2014

Stadium #13: Miller Park

When I was planning my trip to Chicago to see the Braves play the Cubs, it was really expensive to fly back home but reasonably priced on the way up. So I looked into alternatives to fly home from and Milwaukee was the winner. The Brewers were home that weekend so I was able to add #13 to my list.

On Sunday of my baseball weekend I took the Megabus from Milwaukee to Chicago for a whopping $12. It was a very easy ride to get up there. The bus dropped off in downtown so I was able to walk to my hotel. Very convenient! Milwaukee is very walkable, clean, and seems like a pretty nice city.

The lady at the front desk of the hotel told me that the best way to get to the stadium was to go to the Milwaukee Brat House, order a brat & a beer, and take the free shuttle to/from the stadium. Seriously!? JACKPOT! So that is what I did!

brat & 2 beers, because you can't get just 1 (no really, you can't)

Miller Park!

The shuttle dropped us off literally right in front of the ballpark. It was SO convenient and easy! After the game I just hopped back onto the shuttle and bam, back to the brat house. So easy. I highly recommend using this tactic for a Brewers game! Plus I feel like beer, brats, and baseball might be Milwaukee's winning trio. 

Yay :) What a Braves-y weekend!

Miller Park from my seats in the rafters

Pretty good views though & shaded with the roof open. The park is new and doesn't have a lot of soul, but it was a nice experience. The roof was interesting, it just opened and closed periodically throughout the game. I saw the Brewers play (and whoop) the Cardinals so that was exciting. Also it was the Sunday before the All-Star game so they honored the several Brewers who made the team which was great to see. And I just like to see the Cardinals lose!

Evidence of my presence. Yay baseball!

Friday, August 1, 2014

Stadium #12: Wrigley Field!

Research showed me that the Braves were playing in Chicago on a beautiful weekend in July... so I decided to go! I (very easily) convinced my friend JY to come with me to the games and she was kind enough to let me crash at her house. Let the baseballing commence!

Wrigley!

I'm just going to say it - Wrigley is great. It's tight, and close quarters, but it's got that old soul that I love about baseball. It's a great place to watch a ballgame. Pretty much everyone is shaded and covered, which I can only assume is a product of the day game era. It was really nice though. Most modern ballparks are wide open with no shade, but I suppose most teams play night games now so it only sucks during a rare day game. 

Enjoying the game!


Also 2014 is Wrigley's 100th anniversary year. So I got to help celebrate that as well!

I have a personal theory about Wrigley. I don't think it's the Cubs that are cursed - I think it's the grounds they play on. Ever since Wrigley was built, the Cubs haven't won anything. They are one of the most well-loved teams with a massive fan base despite this too. I think it's Wrigley, but by no means do I suggest tearing it down! We need to preserve the historical playing grounds of baseball, especially since Wrigley & Fenway are the 2 surviving parks. 

Wrigley!

I suggest just taking the train to the stadium. It's super easy and there's a stop right up the street. Easiest way to get there! Getting out same thing, the train is right there. I love it when stadiums are accessible by public transportation.