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    Best MLB Stadiums

    This past weekend the guys from The Blown Lead took a baseball trip starting in Baltimore, then on to Philadelphia, and finishing up on Sunday in Pittsburgh. On our last episode, which can be found at www.theblownlead.com, we discussed the trip, including a ranking of the stadiums we've been to. Below are my personal rankings from all the parks I've been to. We try to go on a trip every year, so I'd love to hear some suggestions!

    1) Miller Park - Milwaukee provides an all around unique experience. It starts with an awesome tailgating experience outside of the stadium. The park itself is very unique with the high walls and retractable roof. They place went pitch black when Trevor Hoffman took the mound with Hell's Bells playing over the sound system. Miller Park is the only baseball stadium I've been to that could pull this off.

    2) Great American Ballpark - This isn't be being a homer. I truly enjoy the GABP experience. The are making improvements to the stadium almost every single season. With The Banks, there is now a much improved surrounding environment also. The Reds also do a really good job with fan interaction, from the between innings events, to the flames after a strikeout.

    3) PNC Park - This is probably the only good thing about Pittsburgh. The first thing that stands out about PNC is the city backdrop with the yellow bridge in the outfield. The Primanti Brothers stand also adds some points. There doesn't appear to be a bad seat either.

    4) Oriole Park at Camden Yards - You have to respect the original throw back. Oriole Park is 21 years old, but you would never guess that based on how clean it is. The concourse is wide open and there are several unique vendors serving local favorites. Oriole park loses a few points because when walking the concourse around the infield, you can't see out to the field. It has a basketball arena feel to it. Probably one of the disadvantages of being the first throw back.

    5) Wrigley Field - I'm sure a lot of people, especially Cubs fans, will be furious that Wrigley is not higher on the list. Wrigley was a cool experience because of the nostalgia that goes along with it. The Ivy walls and the old school scoreboard add to a fun experience. However, I will take my top of the line scoreboard and cleaner facilities more often than not. Wrigleyville is a fun place to hang out before and after the games as well.

    6) Progressive Field - Cleveland was also one of the first throw back stadiums. The one issue I have with the design is the inability to walk the entire way around the stadium once you are inside. Other than that it is a nice park with several bars and restaurants near by.

    7) Nationals Park - Washington's park is similar to all the new style stadiums, and I didn't notice anything that made really made it stand out. It was very clean, and easy to get to from the train. The president's race was pretty entertaining also.

    8) Citizens Bank Park - Philadelphia is last so far on my short list. It's not that it's a bad ball park, it's just lacking. The stadium is not really close to the city, and surrounded only by parking lots. The concourse is alright, but they have a brick wall in the outfield where the batters eye is, so a large portion is blocked from view if you are getting a Philly Cheesesteak. The fans seemed to hardly pay attention and about 25% left after the end of the eighth, when they were only losing by 1! Needless to say I was less than impressed with the Philly "Phanatics".

    So there it is. Feel free to tear it apart. We are definitely looking for ideas for future trips as well. Also, if you haven't already, give us a listen. We are on iTunes, Stitcher Radio, and at our website. Also follow us on Twitter and Facebook. Thanks Redleg nation!

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    goreds2 (06-18-2013)

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    Re: Best MLB Stadiums

    With GABP being number 1, I would have to put PNC #2. Wrigley has a bad smell, and this is no joke. Going to the bathroom there is worse than rolling in a pigpen, and it lingers throughout the stadium.

    I'm glad Busch stadium wasn't on your list. It's nothing special and looks stupid with the big empty dirt field outside of it, and you might get stabbed if you take the wrong exit.

    I would put Philly #3, Boston #4, and Houston #5.

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    Member Kiko's Avatar
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    Re: Best MLB Stadiums

    Many of the stadiums I have been to have been demolished and the Royals stadium remodeled so won't include that one.
    1. Fenway - baseball the way it is supposed to be. The crowd is into the game and none of the ticky tack stuff in between innings to entertain the crowd.
    2. Camden Yards - I like the old nostalgia feel and it blows away the old Memorial Stadium and it was pretty good.
    3. GABP - I haven't been in a couple years and I hear The Banks has improved the surrounding area. My biggest complaint of GABP is the river boat in center field that looks like a trailer. It is an after thought and looks like it. Get rid of it.
    4. Turner Field - Nice stadium with good views of downtown. I just don't like the Braves.

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    Re: Best MLB Stadiums

    Ive had the good fortune of being able to visit probably 75% of all the current MLB stadiums....most more than once

    Will touch a just a few of the good, bad and ugly.

    Best of the Best

    AT&T Park - Cant say enough good things about it, maybe the perfect ballpark in a fantastic city.

    PNC Park - Just a beautiful park, though when I was there, might have been 7-8000 people in the stands which added a touch of sadness for a place so nice.

    Safeco Field - My affinity for Seattle as a whole may bump this park up, but maybe the best mix of stadium, fans, food and frosty beverages

    Dodger Stadium- For a joint thats 50 years old it wears its age well....very well. Now if they could only do something about the traffic patterns

    Miller Park- Aesthetically, only so so...but the atmosphere is so great were going up there for my bachelor party weekend when the Reds visit in August.


    Just Off The Pace

    Petco Park - Has improved tremendously since opening in 03' and it was pretty sweet then.

    Camden Yards - The Grande Dame of Retro Parks is still near the top of the list.


    Undervalued

    US Cellular- Yes, seriously.... we all know the surroundings arent great but that ballpark as a whole is leaps and bounds better now than when I originally went in 95.


    Not worth the time

    Tropicana Field-One word....blech.

    Turner Field- Liked it when it opened, hated it when I went back in 2011.


    Against Popular Opinion

    Fenway- Loved everything about it except the seating...for someone 6'4 not a pleasant experience. Next time..Monstah Seats, dont care what they cost.

    Wrigley- Its quaint but sometime quaint bites you in the butt....1 restroom for the whole 2nd level.....yowza.


    As far as GABP....nice but nothing special, but yet in its own unique way, perfect for Cincinnati.

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    TheBlownLead (06-03-2013)

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    Re: Best MLB Stadiums

    GAB isn't on any of these lists...Busch Stadium is on one of them.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-33816_16...ake-in-a-game/

    http://www.travelandleisure.com/arti...all-stadiums/1

    http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1...round-stadiums

    http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/lists/M...photo=11206770

    I'm not going to include Busch Stadium in my ranks because it's my home park so yeah, I love it.

    I've been to US Cellular (White Sox), Wrigley (Cubs), Kauffman (Royals), Coliseum (A's), and AT&T (Giants). I'd rank them:

    Kauffman, AT&T, Wrigley, US Cellular and Coliseum.
    (Watching a couple kissing at Busch Stadium) “Well, he’s kissing her on the strikes and she’s kissing him on the balls.”---a classic "Shannonism" from Cardinals broadcaster Mike Shannon

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    TheBlownLead (06-04-2013)

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    Re: Best MLB Stadiums

    Thanks for the in depth rankings! We are strongly considering flying out to California and hitting up either San Fran and Oakland or Los Angeles for the Dodgers and Angels. Everyone seems to love AT&T but say The Coliseum is only so so. I haven't heard much at all about Angel Stadium of Anaheim.

    Have fun at your bachelor party. The tailgaiting at Miller Park is a blast!

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    Re: Best MLB Stadiums

    Quote Originally Posted by TheBlownLead View Post
    Thanks for the in depth rankings! We are strongly considering flying out to California and hitting up either San Fran and Oakland or Los Angeles for the Dodgers and Angels. Everyone seems to love AT&T but say The Coliseum is only so so. I haven't heard much at all about Angel Stadium of Anaheim.

    Have fun at your bachelor party. The tailgaiting at Miller Park is a blast!

    Angels Stadium is certainly worth the visit if youre out there. Very nice stadium especially when you consider all the construction and de construction that was done to it to at first accommodate the Rams and then to basically completely re-do back to what it was after their move to St. Louis.

    First time there was right after Angels World Series in 02...made a random comment during a converstation with an usher how my godson would be jealous cause he had got caught up in the whole Rally Monkey thing.

    10 minutes later one of the Angels customer service people brings me a whole box of Angels kids items to my seat as a gift for my godson...including a rally monkey.

    So that was mucho bonus points for both the Angels and the stadium staff.

    If your going to do the California circuit, everything but Oakland would be on the must see list. We went last July after the Reds wrapped up in SF, and it would actually be okay if not for the football seating. The scariest thing was the subway station at the Coliseum....yikes

    As far as bachelor party, yes were very pumped for it. Ive actually probably been to Miller Park more than just about any other, but I wanted my crew to see what Ive be talking about for the last 10-12 years.

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    Re: Best MLB Stadiums

    Quote Originally Posted by Moonlite Graham View Post


    Against Popular Opinion

    Fenway- Loved everything about it except the seating...for someone 6'4 not a pleasant experience. Next time..Monstah Seats, dont care what they cost.

    .
    I toured Fenway last summer (the Red Sox were on the road). The view from the seats on top of The Green Monstah were fantastic. I would love to watch a game from there.
    In contrast, some of the field level box seats are original wooden seats 80+ years old and were incredibly tight-not a comfortable place to be for a nine inning ballgame.
    "Hey...Dad. Wanna Have A Catch?" Kevin Costner in "Field Of Dreams."

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    Re: Best MLB Stadiums

    Quote Originally Posted by RedsfaninMO View Post
    With GABP being number 1, I would have to put PNC #2. Wrigley has a bad smell, and this is no joke. Going to the bathroom there is worse than rolling in a pigpen, and it lingers throughout the stadium.

    I'm glad Busch stadium wasn't on your list. It's nothing special and looks stupid with the big empty dirt field outside of it, and you might get stabbed if you take the wrong exit.

    I would put Philly #3, Boston #4, and Houston #5.

    This cracked me up cause it's so true! I think once Ballpark Village is complete, it'll be nicer around the Busch Stadium, but now it's a creepy walk to the cheap parking!

    I've always liked Camden Yards, AT&T Park and Fenway. Kaufman Stadium in KC is slowly becoming a nice stadium.

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    Re: Best MLB Stadiums

    Quote Originally Posted by cw0802 View Post
    This cracked me up cause it's so true! I think once Ballpark Village is complete, it'll be nicer around the Busch Stadium, but now it's a creepy walk to the cheap parking!

    I've always liked Camden Yards, AT&T Park and Fenway. Kaufman Stadium in KC is slowly becoming a nice stadium.

    There's a lot of fun to be had around Busch Stadium, and it will get even better once Ballpark Village is complete.

    It's really a shame what happened with Ballpark Village. The stadium was built, and as they were finalizing plans for BPV, the economy absolutely tanked. There wasn't much the Cardinals could do but sit on the property until things improved.

    Initially, that area was going to have a boatload of office space and condos, as well as bars, restaurants, and retail. I actually have a friend who put a deposit down on a condo, which would have overlooked the stadium. (He's since gotten his deposit back.)

    Now, it's waaaay scaled back -- probably for the best, as there won't be vacant spaces just sitting there unused. That would have been depressing. Now, they'll have some office space, but mostly bars, restaurants, and retail, which will draw during baseball season.

    But yes, it's an eye sore at the moment. But I assure you... You will have a great time around Busch if you go even now.

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    Re: Best MLB Stadiums

    Quote Originally Posted by RedsfaninMO View Post
    With GABP being number 1, I would have to put PNC #2. Wrigley has a bad smell, and this is no joke. Going to the bathroom there is worse than rolling in a pigpen, and it lingers throughout the stadium.

    I'm glad Busch stadium wasn't on your list. It's nothing special and looks stupid with the big empty dirt field outside of it, and you might get stabbed if you take the wrong exit.

    I would put Philly #3, Boston #4, and Houston #5.

    Its hilarious reading your comments directed at the Cardinals and their organization time after time. You are one of the those sour bigots who will go to the end of the earth to cause a problem/situation/argument. Every major city as parts where you wouldn't want to end up in the middle of the night. And that space is being currently worked on thanks...... I can tell living in the MO area has caused you great jealously because of the success of the cardinals. Such a sob story you seem to be.

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    Re: Best MLB Stadiums

    Parks I've been to in order of enjoyment:

    1. Old Tiger Stadium...just a classic, not the prettiest joint, and there was a good chance you would come back to a tire-less car, but what a wonderful place to watch a game...I thought I saw Al Kaline in the Tigers dugout, there was that much of a historic feel to it.

    2. Petco Park...just a beautiful stadium in one of the most beautiful areas of the U.S. not a bad seat in the place...if only the Padre brand of baseball was more fun to watch. (At least, I saw my Reds destroy them)

    3. GABP...I miss it terribly, loved sitting out in the moon deck.

    4 a. Angel Stadium....took my future wife there on one of our first dates, they played Oakland and I couldn't even tell you what the final score was. BUT, I do know it's a nice place to watch a ballgame, and I actually enjoy the "water feature" in the outfield that goes off for Angel home runs.

    4 b. Coors Field ... Really liked the feel of this one as it was one of the "retro" stadiums and I saw a game the year after it was built. Enjoyed it quite a bit.

    5. US Cellular ... The ballpark is largely unremarkable, but Chicago is a great town, and really this is a fun place to watch a game. Take the subway, makes it a lot easier.

    6 a. Dodger Stadium ... This one was disappointing for me. Someone else said they thought it carried its age well...they must not have sat in the outfield bleachers...it's a pretty run down area. Could use a face lift. Food was just "ok" and mega expensive.

    6 b. Riverfront ... It only gets this high because I'm a lifer Reds fan. I hate astroturf, so the original Riverfront was blech for me. When they did the mini renovation on it, and put in turf and opened up that section of the stadium in left it felt a LOT more like a ballfield instead of a multipurpose stadium.

    Honorable mention: Fifth Third Field (home of the Dayton Dragons) ... yes, it's not a major league stadium, but it's such a great place to watch a ballgame that it had to make the list. The front office really goes out of its way to make families feel welcome and have a great time. Plus the stadium is beautiful! Set the all time single season record for consecutive sellouts and still counting.

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    Re: Best MLB Stadiums

    I will say that one of the best things about Nationals Park in DC is that it is literally right off the subway. Just get off the train, go up a couple of sets of escalators and you are there. Couldn't have made it more convienant. There just aren't many or any restaraunts close by if you want to eat somewhere besides the ballpark before or after the game.

    I have been to Camden Yards but its been quite a few years. Very nice retro park. The warehouse really makes the stadium unique. Plenty to do around the park too. The Inner Harbor in Baltimore is a very nice place to visit.
    Reds Fan Since 1971

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    1940757690 (06-10-2013), TheBlownLead (06-04-2013)

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    Re: Best MLB Stadiums

    Quote Originally Posted by cumberlandreds View Post
    I will say that one of the best things about Nationals Park in DC is that it is literally right off the subway. Just get off the train, go up a couple of sets of escalators and you are there. Couldn't have made it more convienant. There just aren't many or any restaraunts close by if you want to eat somewhere besides the ballpark before or after the game.

    I have been to Camden Yards but its been quite a few years. Very nice retro park. The warehouse really makes the stadium unique. Plenty to do around the park too. The Inner Harbor in Baltimore is a very nice place to visit.
    I like B-more and the harbor area, but the stadium is the mos tboring one I have ever been to, doesnt have any baseball feel to it IMO, you walk right up on it and never feel that energy you do at most other parks.
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    Re: Best MLB Stadiums

    Miller Park is only so, so. And while tailgating is fun, that's more for football. There isn't anything around Miller. I'd much rather be at a stadium in a more urban environment with multiple bars and restaruants right there.


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