Recently, I was on Reddit.com and asked the readers on the Atlanta Braves page to give us a list of their favorite venues to watch Braves games, other than Turner Field. With the season looming just months away, and Braves fans planning road trips, I figured it was time to list the places you may want to go to catch a game, and where to stay away from.
Once the season begins, there is a clear favorite as to where to watch an away game according to Braves fans, and it should come as no surprise:
1. Wrigley Field – The celebrity singing of Take Me Out To The Ballgame, the bleacher bums, the ivy covered wall, the rooftop seats, and the fans’ hospitality are just some of the many reasons that Braves fans enjoy watching a game in the ‘Friendly Confines’. The Braves travel to Wrigley as their last road series in 2013 (Sept 20-22), so not only will you get to see your Braves in a great venue, but you also might get a chance to support them during a key series in the National League East race!
2. Busch Stadium – The sea of red is widely known for their knowledge and hospitality, but while some Braves fans will argue their extent of hospitality, none can deny the atmosphere at the park. Even though most Braves fans dislike the Cardinals because of the outcome over the past two years, Busch Stadium is still a must see destination if you are wanting to catch the Braves on the road. They will visit St. Louis for a four game series, August 22-25.
3. Marlins Park – While the team may stink, the newest park in in all the land is nothing short of amazing. The art, the scoreboard, the fish tank backstop, and the Clevelander in left field make this ballpark feel more like a vacation itself. While you are there, don’t forget that there is also a ball game going on down on the field. The Braves open up their road schedule in Miami April 8-10, then visit two more times, July 8-10 and a four game series September 9-12.
4.-6. Great American Ballpark; AT&T Park; Chase Field – If you can swing a three city road trip, these three ballparks are all visited by the Braves May 6-15. San Francisco wins out the fourth spot on our list, and while the integrity of the fans is up for dispute (a nice way to say they are dicks), the beauty of the park was never questioned. The Braves make their trip to San Fran May 9-12. The Giants’ series is sandwiched in between number 5 Cincinnati and number 6 Arizona. Braves travel to Great American Ballpark (how conceited of a name is that?) May 6-8 and Chase Field May 13-15. Both parks are notorious for homerun balls, so grab bring your glove or hit it here sign and grab a seat down in the outfield bleachers, where the view’s ok, and the beers are warm.
7. Nationals Park – No series will be bigger for the Braves this season, especially on the road, than those with the Washington Nationals, and if this park belonged to any other team, it would have been higher on the list. The park is modeled after the old Griffith Stadium, where the Washington Senators used to play, and has the intimate feel of the old ball parks that more and more stadiums are being designed to capture. Needless to say the site seeing in the area is incredible, with DC right around the corner. The Braves make their way up north on their first road trip, April12-14, August 5-7, and what promises to be a critical series to open the Braves final road trip September 16-18.
8. Kauffman Stadium – The Braves’ inner-league schedule includes a trip to Kansas city this year, the home of great barbeque, good music, and a 40 year old ballpark with fountains and a crown atop it’s scoreboard. While the park may be older, the atmosphere is great, there’s not a bad seat in the house, and the food is as cheap as the Royal’s ownership. The Braves make their way out west to visit the Royals for a quick two game series June 25-26.
9. Coors Field – The only reason the diamond in Denver ranks number nine on our list is because of when the Braves visit the Rockies. The series in still in April, so it will feel more like you are riding the ‘Coooooooooold Train’ than watching a baseball game (see what I did there?). Never the less, the beauty of Denver and her surrounding Rocky Mountains make this a must see destination for any Braves fan. Just, maybe see it a different season, when the chance of snow will be a little less. The Braves head for the mountains April 22-24.
10. Citi Field – The team stinks, the city is overrated, the fans will have nothing to chant now that Chipper is gone, and I can’t even say the nickname given to the home of the Mets, because doing so would surely get me fired. Citi field makes this list because if something is THIS bad, you have to see it, right? (Kind of like when someone says ‘Ew, smell this’ you lean in and take a whiff) Plus, you should never miss an opportunity to let a Mets fan know exactly how bad their team is. The Braves make their way to fight the mighty Metropolitans May 24-26, a four game set July 22-25, and a two game series August 20-12
Honorable Mention – Comerica Park would have made our list if it wasn’t found in Detroit, or if the Braves were going there later in the season. They do, however, feature a ferris wheel, a nice water feature in center field that is choreographed to music, and a decade by decade museum in the ‘fan walk’ concourse. Besides, this is the only time for a while the Braves are going to play in Detroit, so you might as well, right? That trip will happen April 26-28 so you can tie that trip in with the one to Coors Field if you want to.