August 15, 2014
Summary: PNC Park comes in third on sports writer Joe Posnanski's list of all 30 Major League ballparks, finishing just behind Wrigley and Fenway. Posnanski describes PNC Park as "So fantastic, I’m surprised every single time I go."
So I’ve been to all 30 ballparks … and the thing that’s easy to forget is baseball has never had so many gorgeous ballparks. I grew up in the 1970s and early 1980s when ballparks were dumps. There were almost no exceptions.
This is the golden age.
Here is my ranking of all 30 ballparks:
No. 30: O.co Coliseum (Oakland A’s): Not good for football either.
No. 29: Tropicana Field (Tampa Bay Rays): Dark and depressing spot in the middle of sunny Florida.
No. 28: U.S Cellular Field (Chicago White Sox): I want to like it more than I do.
No. 27: Rogers Center (Toronto Blue Jays): Still fun to watch roof open and close. But Astroturf? In 2014?
No. 26 Turner Field (Atlanta Braves): Nice enough, but antiseptic. Anyway, the Braves are leaving.
No. 25: Great American Ballpark (Cincinnati Reds): Great Hall of Fame.
No. 24: Marlins Park (Miami Marlins): Points for being different, but too gaudy for my tastes.
No. 23 Chase Field (Arizona Diamondbacks): Swimming pool is most notable feature.
No. 22: Nationals Park (Washington Nationals): Wish it had more Washington character.
No. 21 Globe Life Park (Texas Rangers): How many different names can one ballpark have?
No. 20: Yankee Stadium (New York Yankees): Hard to balance old and new; I don’t think they quite got it.
No. 19: Citi Field (New York Mets): Even a romantic like me was ready to lose Shea Stadium.
No. 18 Minute Maid Park (Houston Astros): Fan of Tal’s incline in center – an homage to old Crosley Field.
No. 17: Angel Stadium (Los Angeles Angels): You often find it at bottom of such lists, but I love everything about it. I’m instantly happy just walking in.
No. 16: Miller Park (Milwaukee Brewers): Excellent park but it doesn’t quite stand out in today’s competitive world of ballparks.
[ RELATED: A different opinion on ranking all 30 parks ]
No. 15 Citizens Bank Ballpark (Philadelphia Phillies): Beautiful ballpark, lots of fun when Phillies were winning.
No. 14 Comerica Park (Detroit Tigers): Really grown on me through the years, thoroughly underrated.
No. 13: Busch Stadium (St. Louis Cardinals): Not overly thrilled with design but it instantly infused with Cardinals passion.
No. 12: Progressive Park (Cleveland Indians): Was a Top 10 ballpark in its heyday, and still is pretty fantastic … but small crowds can be depressing.
No. 11: Coors Field (Colorado Rockies): Beautiful and the baseball there is singular.
No. 10 Kauffman Stadium (Kansas City Royals): A wonderful place to watch baseball and has been since it was built in 1973.
No. 9: Target Field (Minnesota Twins): Love the way it fits snugly into the Minnesota downtown.
No. 8: Petco Park (San Diego Padres): Gorgeous ballpark in San Diego – how could it miss?
No. 7: Dodger Stadium (Los Angeles Dodgers): Showing some age, but still spectacular.
No. 6: Safeco Field (Seattle Mariners): If the Mariners start winning, this scene could be like San Francisco.
No. 5 Camden Yards (Baltimore Orioles): Just a wonderful little ballpark in a wonderful baseball city.
No. 4 Fenway Park (Boston Red Sox): Inconvenient, crumbling, lousy sightlines and magical.
No. 3 PNC Park (Pittsburgh Pirates): So fantastic, I’m surprised every single time I go.
No, 2 AT&T Park (San Francisco Giants): Like PNC Park with a bay and a full house every night.
No. 1 Wrigley Field (Chicago Cubs): Of course