Here's a list of my favorite 9 baseball stadiums (past and present). Why 9? Well, 9 is a magic number in baseball and I don't want Letterman getting all bent out of shape!
1. Wrigley Field (Chicago Cubs)
Nothing can beat a ballgame at the friendly confines on the north side of Chicago. On a recent trip to Wrigley I figured out how nice it was to attend a game at a stadium without a huge electronic scoreboard. Everyone in our section (and it was packed even though the cubs were under .500) was conversational, engaged in the game and each other. What a wonderful experience! From the ivy on the walls to the live organ music composing a perfect background soundtrack, I was always thinking that this is how a baseball game should be.
2. Fenway Park (Boston Red Sox)
Many of the things mentioned about Wrigley apply to Fenway as well. Two major reasons exist for the home of the Red Sox not occupying my top spot: 1) The Red Sox won the World Series in 2004 and 2007. The Cubs haven't won it since 1908 and haven't even been in a Series since 1945. So because Halley's comet has passed the Earth twice since the Cubs last won I felt the need to have them win something. 2) I don't like the Red Sox.
3. Old Tiger Stadium (Detroit Tigers)
The first place I ever saw a game. No more justification is needed.
4. Coors Field (Colorado Rockies)
I've seen more games here than any other ballpark. This is a BIG stadium, but it somehow generates the intimate feelings of a smaller park. The views of the Rocky Mountains and $4 rockpile seats are big bonuses.
5. Kaufman Stadium (Kansas City Royals)
Interstate 70 runs right past, but I barely noticed. In fact, if I hadn't known that the highway was so close I'd have thought that the stadium was situated in a giant park. I loved the relaxed feel, but this has a downside. Royals fans are so relaxed that they don't even come out to the games.
6. The Great American BallPark (Cincinnati Reds)
What a wonderfully cozy field nestled right up against the great Ohio River! I had trouble deciding whether or not I should watch the riverboats floating past or Johnny Cueto shoving his spikes into the dome of Jason LaRue.
7.Safeco Field (Seattle Mariners)
Although I've been to other stadiums that are more appealing to the eye few of those rival Safeco in sentimental value. I've seen quite a few games here and most of them I watched with one of my favorite game-watching partners, Jenny Fillion. Jenny's enthusiasm has the ability take me back to the fun of watching games as a kid. We would cheer like crazy, wave at the players to see if they'd acknowledge us (one waved back at her once), talk about baseball, eat hot dogs, and just hang out at the park. Those were really fun times.
*If anybody knows Franklin Gutierrez please tell him that Jenny would like his phone number*
8. Old Yankee Stadium (New York Yankees)
The house that Ruth built. The granddaddy of all ballparks everywhere past, present and future. I went there to see a game with my dad in 1994. We watched Cal Ripken help the Orioles to victory while moving one game closer to the consecutive games played record held by an old Yankee great: Lou Gehrig. I passed Gehrig's ghost in the concourse and he was smiling.
9. Progressive Field (Cleveland Indians)
Of course I like the old name better: Jacobs Field or "The Jake by the Lake". I've seen a few games here but none was more memorable than a playoff game back in the Indians' heyday of the 90's. The tribe was taking on the Orioles. Roberto Alomar was in his first game back after being suspended for spitting on an umpire (my understanding of the incident leads me to believe that Robby was justified in spitting on a man that called him a "fag"), the Orioles had the only lineup in Major League history where everybody in their starting lineup hit at least 20 home runs ('roids?), and Albert Belle took Armando Benitez deep for a game winning grand slam on what seemed to be the twentieth pitch of the at bat. The place went apeshit!