Major League Baseball returned this week and as fans fight through the fickle winds and drizzle of these early season games, our hosts and experts from MLB Network Radio weighed in on the nine best stadiums in the majors. Consider this your coast-to-coast guide on stadiums you must see as the weather gets nicer and nicer.
9) Safeco Field, Seattle Mariners
Located a stone’s throw from the Emerald City’s central business district, the Mariners’ home stadium is a twin jewel, along with the Seahawks’ Century Link Field, of stadium/arena arrangements that work as seamlessly as possible in a busy downtown. Toss in the huge baskets of garlic fries available at Safeco and the fact that the Pacific Northwest typically has perfect weather between May and September (no, really) and you’re talking about one helluva a nice baseball experience.
8) Petco Park, San Diego Padres
Home to the Padres and the 2016 MLB All-Star Game, Petco Park, as MLB Network Radio’s James Memolo describes it as the, “….most relaxing park ever…park near the gate… Check out harbor in upper deck or check out crowd on grassy knoll behind CF wall…” Toss in the fact that San Diego’s incredible craft-brewing scene is “hoppin'” and that the imminently walkable Gaslamp District is right there for you to experience, and it’s no wonder Petco made this list.
7) Yankee Stadium, New York Yankees
“Ehh, I’m walkin’ ‘ere!!” New Yorkers make it pretty clear who is in charge (they are, always) on the sidewalks outside of the new Yankee Stadium and with the many, many championship banners adorning the place, it’s hard to blame them. While it’s not the same beautiful, legendary rust-bucket as the original “House that Ruth Built,” the new Stadium makes up with modern amenities for what it lacks in mystique.
6) Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles Dodgers
Like your baseball with some palm trees, exquisite sunshine and a picture-perfect stadium nestled in the heart of LA? Dodger Stadium has served as the home of baseball in LA for over 50 years and is widely considered to be a masterpiece of mid-20th Century architecture.
5) Camden Yards, Baltimore Orioles
The park that launched the retro-design craze, Camden Yards and its many copycat designs may seem commonplace now, but this stadium was truly revolutionary in it’s vibe, design and location. Shrugging off the tired concept of a “concrete circle” multi-use stadium (picture the old Three Rivers Stadium in Pittsburgh) for an architectural design built for baseball, in a city’s downtown and with fantastic sight lines from every seat in the house was very forward in the early 1990s, and let’s just be thankful for this park forcing all stadium designers to reconsider what they can do.
4) Wrigley Field, Chicago Cubs
“Not just for losers anymore!” This Chicagoan-transplanted-to-NYC is thrilled at the prospect of the North Siders advancing deep into the postseason once again. The ivy, the Old Styles, the bleachers? Wrigley is an experience like none other and if the winds are whipping towards the lake, the games essentially become a regular-season home-run derby.
3) PNC Park, Pittsburgh Pirates
Pittsburgh’s PNC Park very easily could have been even higher on this list. The next two above it have nothing on it from a fan’s experience standpoint. Take it away, Grant Paulsen:
“Seeing people walking across the Clemente bridge to the ballpark while you’re sitting in your seat and the boats going up and down the river behind the right field stand is awesome. Just a perfect setting for baseball and an amazingly picturesque way to watch a game.”
2) AT&T Park, San Francisco Giants
“The House that Bonds Built” has served as the Giants’ home since 2000. With its striking vistas overlooking the San Francisco Bay and with its iconic Coke Bottle in the outfield, AT&T Park is unmistakable. The legacy of so many greats, those World Series titles in 2010, ’12 and ’14, plus a team that is seemingly always in the playoffs has afforded a very home-partisan crowd over the years and with it a very clear home-field advantage.
1) Fenway Park, Boston Red Sox
The oldest stadium in the majors is also the best stadium in MLB according to our experts. This stadium has seen Babe Ruth, Ted Williams, Roger Clemens, Wade Boggs, Manny Ramirez, Pedro Martinez and other legends in its 103 years of existence. Fenway may not have the best sight lines and you can quibble about the cost, but there’s no purer experience in all of baseball. Baseball is the religion and Fenway is the church.
Tags:baltimore oriolesboston red soxchicago cubsfenway parklos angeles dodgersmlbmlb opening daynew york yankeespittsburgh piratessafeco fieldsan diego padressan francisco giantsseattle mariners
Music, Sports, News and more
All in one place on the SiriusXM app