Baseball trip reflections and Ballparks Ranked

Greetings from somewhere east of Tucson and west of El Paso. I am returning to Dallas following my epic 29 day baseball road trip- aside from two car rentals, two buses, and one airplane, I did all the traveling on Amtrak. For many years I had the goal of visiting all of the Major League Ballparks. My renewal leave this Spring allowed me to finish the list- aside from one dump in California and the Florida parks. If you’d like to read my previous accounting of my visits to half the parks, click here:

April-May 2023

Teams I saw once:







White Sox




Teams I saw twice:







Quick thoughts from each ballpark:

Detroit: most exciting game; walk off home run by the home team in the 10th

Toronto: Skydome/Rogers Centre isn’t as much of a concrete Goliath as I thought. And the stereotype seems true: the Canadians are so kind. 

Philly: Very engaged fans- someone tried a couple of times to start The Wave™️, and they were like, “Dude have a seat.” OH AND PHILLY HAS EXCELLENT FOOD SELECTIONS 

Cincinnati: This is a very good ballpark in a great setting, but attendance was poor. The team isn’t good, but they swept my Rangers. Should have better support. Good beer selections- and the chili cheese coneys were a hit!

Chicago and Milwaukee were extra special because my buddy Royce Hayes joined me. 

Wrigley- sure I get it. It’s old and small and everyone goes here. But I wonder what the percentage of ✌️fans✌️were there, versus tourists. And I have never been so cold- not just at a ballgame but ever. 

White Sox- really enjoyed this place. If you go to Chicago, and you should because it’s the best city, see the Sox. Very committed fans, they make a kind of generic stadium work really well, great uniforms and history. 

Milwaukee: I had the most fun here. The ballpark has a brewery!! The fans love Wisconsin- their pride is obvious. I fell in love with Mr Barrelman, now my favorite mascot. Closed roof- a good touch on a cool night. 

Minneapolis/St Paul: Cold, but not bad. Again, midwesterners are just proud in the best ways. Homemade mini donuts were a WIN. 

San Francisco: I mean, the highlight of the trip was my wife’s visit. Oracle Park is a gem. Owner financed- no public money. Garlic fries or were kind of spare, but the crab fries were on point! And getting to return to Oakland on a ferry after the game was a big bonus. Cold- not Wrigley cold of course but cold!

San Diego- great ballpark, great location. I hate to fly, but the flight plan of landing planes just over the outfield wall is a fun distraction. Great fans, really confident team, Tony Gwynn was one of my top 10 all time fav players. Time to win a title, but not before the Rangers. 

The Big A- another old stadium style, but they also make it work. Not much stands out, except that the Rangers scored 27 runs in three games there this weekend!

Now the rankings. Buckle up. 

30 Oakland- could have gone here but didn’t, for two reasons: 1. It’s a dump 2. They are abandoning their loyal fan base for Las Vegas. Boo

29 Tampa- haven’t been here, but I know it’s terrible; 1. It’s Florida 2. It’s just not for baseball. I grew up going to games in the Astrodome. A real shame, because their team is very good. 

28 Arizona

27 DC- just very generic 

26 Toronto

25 New Rangers park- just doesn’t have any character. They chose function over design and it’s a shame, because as hot as the old place was, it was fantastic. 

24 Seattle

23 Denver 

22 Anaheim

21 Kansas City

20 Houston- bonus for the little train and downtown location. Other than that it’s an airplane hanger. 

19 Milwaukee- Major points for placing experience over function. Not much to look at, located away from the city, but it’s a great time. Good food too

18 Miami - haven’t been here- again Florida- but I give them points for design. They’ll never have a devoted fan base, which is management and ownership’s fault. Won two titles, sold off the players, alienated their fans.  

17 New York Mets

16 Philadelphia 

15 Detroit

14 Atlanta- haven’t been to the new place, but I disapprove of suburbs > city. 

13 Cleveland- good location, great city, terrible ballpark food. Y’all need to visit other parks and take notes. 

12 Cincinnati

11 White Sox

10 Minnesota

9 Wrigley- I know this and Fenway are a century + old. I respect that. 

8 Fenway

7 St Louis- haven’t been to the new Busch. No plans to attend. I hate the Cardinals- love the fans, respect the tradition, just too much heartbreak with Astros and Rangers. 

6 San Diego 

5 New York Yankees- haven’t been to the new Stadium, but Yankees fans are the best. And they know it. 

4Baltimore- great location, started the revitalization/historic trend of the 90s. 

3 Dodgers- A+ all around. Classic. Great fans, lousy location, terrific history. I could see games here every day for a month and never grow tired of the experience 

2 Pittsburgh- previous #1. It has everything- downtown. Bridges. Small/intimate. They are winning. More people need to visit this place. It should be the prototype. 

1 San Francisco- food needs improvement. Water location, return to three places via ferry, easy mass transit, part of the city, great franchise and history. Privately financed. Unpredictable weather. Bridge behind left field. The giant Coke bottle IS A SLIDE. PacBell-AT&T-Oracle. It’s got it all.