Stadiums. The cathedrals of baseball. I recently bought the book Ballparks: A Panoramic History by Jim Sutton Marc Sandalow, and there are some gorgeous outtakes of baseball’s best stadiums in there. My roommate owns the Take Me Out to the Ballpark book, which doesn’t have the picture quality or size as the other one, but it does have better information about the stadiums and the history of baseball. Both are great buys.
Being a Ranger fan, I’ve been to The Ballpark in Arlington (I like that name so much better than Ameriquest Field) several times, and I love it. Other parks I’d particularly like to go to a game at are Wrigley Field, Fenway, Camden Yards, PNC Park, and Yankee Stadium. Wrigley and Fenway have precedence over the others because of their deep history. Man, cubs fans deserve a victory! Since 1908…wow.
A few tidbits…
- The Cubs did not play their first night game until 1988. They still play the majority of their games during the day.
- The Montreal Expos never won a championship while playing for 35 years (1969-2004). They had the best record in the majors in ’94 after 114 GP, but the strike ended the season. Rough life for an Expos fan. They were moved in 2004 to become the Washington Senators, who have not fared well at all. At least Canada is still represented by the Jays, who have won the World Series twice in ’92 and ’93.
- The highest capacity MLB park is Dodgers Stadium at 56,000.
- Bill Veeck, former team owner of the White Sox, made a promotional event, Disco Demolition Night, in the 1979 season. Fans who brought unwanted disco records got in the game for 98 cents and got to witness a huge burning of the records in between a double header. Instead of the 12,000 hoped for 90,000 turned up to the stadium. The event was a disaster and went out of control, and the White Sox were forced to forfeith the second game.
- Ten Cent Beer Night was another baseball promotion gone wrong. The Indians were hoping to increase ticket sales so they sold beers for just 10 cents to fans, and there was no limit on the amount you could drink. A riot on the field in the 9th inning caused this game to be forfeited by Cleveland.
- In 1969, the MLB changed the rule the the pitching rubber should be 10 inches above home plate rather than the previous 15 inches. This shifted momentum heavily towards the batters.