Major League Baseball (MLB) has always been a passion of mine. The Great American pastime has always captivated me, and I enjoy following every season. One of my goals in life is to complete the MLB Stadium tour, and go to a game at each of the 30 existing stadiums. Anytime I travel in the US I check to see if there will be an MLB game in town.
Unlike most sports, MLB stadiums do not have to conform to specific field dimensions, which has created some great, and sometimes awkward park designs over the years. Every MLB park has unique features which makes all of them fun to visit.
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Up to this point I have visited 8 of the stadiums, with more planned for this year. Here are some of the parks that I have visited:
Coors Field, Home of the Colorado Rockies
Opened in 1995 in Denver’s lower downtown (LODO) area with several bars and restaurants in close proximity. Coors Field is a great place to catch a game regardless of how good the home team is in that season. With great views of the mountains to the west and a rooftop party deck, attending a game at Coors field is one of the finest MLB venues in the country.
Petco Park, Home of the San Diego Padres
San Diego, California
Right near the bay in downtown San Diego, Petco Park is a great place to catch a game. The park was built around a historic building that sits in left field, and has a unique design. A combination of the outfield design and the heavy sea air blowing in crates a park that gives up few runs. If you like pitching and defense this the park for you. It is also a very laid back ballpark. In center field there is a grassy picnic area, along with a playground and large sandy area, perfect for families with small children. Almost anytime you head to Petco is a great time with the wonderful San Diego weather, and scenic ocean views.
Wrigley Field, Home of the Chicago Cubs
This is a classic! Wrigley field sits in North Chicago right in the middle of a neighborhood. Everything about this park is iconic, from the ivy covered outfield fence to the old style beer served in the stands. The stadium has been the home of the cubs for over 100 years, and with a recent renovation it is set for another century of baseball. This is a must for any baseball fan to attend in their lifetime!
Minute Made Park, Home of the Houston Astros
Minute maid boasts a retractable roof to keep in the A/C during those sweltering Texas evenings. I really enjoy going to games in this venue. It’s easy to walk around the park on the concourse and still see the game. There is a baseball themed hotel adjacent to the park that is a great place to stay when you’re in Houston.
Marlins Park, Home of the Miami Marlins
One of the newer parks in the MLB, this also has a retractable roof to protect the field from rain, and keeps it comfy when it’s hot outside. The park was built away from the city, and there is not much surrounding it, but I’m sure it will be built up in the coming years. There is no lack of excitement inside of the park. The Clevelander, an expansion of the south beach hotel and nightclub is in left field, and boasts a bar and swimming pool on the field level. A giant carnival feature in center field is pretty cool, and activates every time the Marlins hit a home run. It’s a fun park to attend a game.
Rogers Centre, Home of the Toronto Blue Jays
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Rogers is the lone MLB Park left in Canada. It is an old multi purpose stadium that does primarily Blue Jays games. The park itself is not too exciting, but the Jays draw large passionate crowds for their games. One great feature is the hotel attached to the stadium. Some of their rooms have windows looking directly onto the playing field. If you can’t get a room overlooking the park then you can hang out in the hotel bar, which also overlooks the field.
Fenway Park, Home of the Boston Red Sox,
Baseball’s oldest and smallest park, it is also one of the most iconic. The history in this park along with it’s unique shape makes it a must visit for baseball fans. There are so many unique features and interesting things to see at Fenway. The park has been beautifully maintained throughout the years and has all of the features of a modern park while keeping the historic aspect and old world charm intact. I definitely recommend taking a tour of the park while you’re there. They are offered most days before the game begins. You’ll get to see most of the park, walk on the green monster, and get lots of great information from a knowledgeable tour guide. Red Sox games do sell out, so get your tickets in advance!
Camden Yards, Home of the Baltimore Orioles
Best street food I’ve had at a ballpark. You can get almost anything you can imagine outside of the park. I loved the crab cakes and hot sausages. Camden is constructed of red brick and steel. It’s a beautiful ballpark with a great concourse in the outfield to walk on. I love the bullpens in the outfield. The visitors pen is just below the walkway and you can get real close to the pitchers warming up before they head onto the field.
Whether you are looking to visit all of the parks, or just want to attend one game, MLB Baseball is a great event! I love all of the history of the game, and all of the unique features that are built into each park. Due to the lengthy season (162 games per team) there is usually an MLB game going on every day of the week in the summertime, and tickets are usually pretty easy to come by. I’ve seen tickets to some games for as low as $1, you can’t beat that!
I’ll be updating this post as I continue to visit more MLB Parks. One day I’ll have all 30 in here!