Scent Weakly 2.0

Sunday, January 14, 2007

My Ballpark Ratings

Note: This is a work in progress, but I thought I'd post my fist draft.

In a couple weeks I'll be at a baseball game in Mineapolis which will mark the end (at least for a few months) of my quest of visiting all 30 major league ballparks. So, here are my current rankings of my favorite parks.

But first some background. There are some ballpark ratings out there that try to quantify various ballpark factors in order to come up with an objective list. I prefer a more holistic approach. I try to take in the gestalt of the place and judge accordingly, but I do have three often overlapping criteria.

1) Architecture. I like ballparks with open views over the outfield seats and parks that relect their city.

2) Location, location, location. Urban ballparks that don't sit in the middle of an asphalt parking lots are my preference.

3) Sociology. A ballpark gets extra points if the neighboring restaurants and bars are filled with fans before and after games.

1. PNC -- The perfect ballpark. Unfortunately, the Pirates suck.

2. Wrigley -- Wrigley and Fenway are tough to compare to newer parks because based on pure creature comforts they are sorely lacking, but they get extra credit for being museum pieces.

3. Fenway -- I give Wrigley the nod because of the low outfield bleachers which opens the view, but I like the outside and the surrounding area around Fenway better.

4. AT&T -- They had to squeeze the ballpark into a small area which resulted in some disadvantages like some very narrow concourses, but the relative smallness of the building does focus attention onto the game. And, isn't that the reason why we go the games?

5. Petco -- I'm sure there is some home town bias here, and there are certainly some things I don't like (right field second deck and centerfield batter's eye primarily). But the place is unique, the neighborhood is filling in, and the weather is perfect.

6. Camden Yards
7. Safeco
8. Busch
9. Comerica
10. The Jake
11. Coors Field
12. Dodger Stadium
13. Citizen's Bank
14. Kauffman
15. Turner Field
16. Yankee Stadium
17. Great American Ballpark
18. Ballpark at Arlington
19. Comiskey
20. Anaheim
21. The Bob
22. Juice Box
23. Miller Park
24. Sky Dome
25. Shea
26. Dolphin
27. Tropicana
28. Network Associates
29. RFK


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