The Great American Ballpark Tour – Any Man’s Dream

It all started four weeks ago as I watched it pour rain here in Connecticut and track the storms on the radar. I had a Friday night without the kids and desperately wanted to go to Yankee Stadium to see my Tigers take on the Yankees. It’s a trek down to the city, especially Friday rush hour. But some great tickets came through and I realized that I was on the brink of man greatness – four ballparks in four weeks! When I told some of my married friends they claimed that married men across America were building statues of me.

2:30 rolled around that Friday and I looked at my friend, Jason, at work and told him “you have 10 minutes to decide whether or not you want to go to Yankee Stadium with me or not”. He jumped at the opportunity and off we went on week one of my adventure. We made it down for a slight rain delay and we sat two rows behind the Tiger dugout for A’Rod’s first game back. AND we got to experience Yankee Stadium like rock stars – in the Legends Suite. You want lobster tail? You got it. Filet? Got it. The infamous wall of candy? Got it. Our only mistake was leaving the game early to catch the train and missing the legendary Miggy hitting a game tying home run off Rivera in the 9th inning to deep center.
Yankee Stadium 

The following weekend I found myself at historic Wrigley Field with one of my best friends, Mike. Again, we had primo seats – two rows off the Cardinals bullpen. It was THE perfect day in Chicago. The drinks flowed freely like a college frat party, the sun beat on us and we had a day long party at Wrigley like no other baseball game I have ever been to. What an amazing experience that was even though Mike is a White Sox fan (he was donning a Cardinals shirt) and I could care less who won.
Wrigley Field

Week 3 brought me and the 4 kids to Citi Field in New York to see the Tigers take on the Mets. It was my first time to Citi and a visit to my 22nd ballpark. We all got gussied up in our Tigers gear and no one was afraid of the reaction of the Mets fans. The Mets went up early but the Tigers rallied for tons of runs in the ninth. I just had to make sure the kids were entertained and it was a bit like the “are we there yet” with the “is the game over yet”. Regardless I was on a mission and week 3 was completed along with a Tigers victory.
 Citi Field

Week 4 and Labor Day weekend brought Fenway Park. I guess you could call it my “home” park as it’s the closest baseball stadium to Hartford. However, we all know the Tigers are my home team. I ventured on a Sunday up to see the Sox play the Sox on a first date with Lisa!  Yes, a first date to Fenway!  Our date was made complete when the usher waived Lisa and me down and put us in the front row right down the right field line. Unbelievable. An amazing date and day with a with a sports fan and beautiful, smart, funny woman was an incredible way to conclude my ballpark tour.
 Fenway Sept

Not only was my ballpark trip amazing, but the seats and the company for each of them were out of this world. 4 weeks, 4 ballparks, 4 different unique and experiences that I will remember the rest of my life. Thank you to everyone that made it happen – Jason, Mike, my kids and Lisa.

PS – As I type, I will be going to Fenway again on Tuesday to sit in the front row by the bullpen to root Max Scherzer on for his 20th win.

PPS – I will complete the 5 week tour with a trip to Michigan Stadium with my son, Cooper, to watch Michigan destroy Notre Dame.

Yes married men, any man…be jealous.

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About Steve Mitzel

By trade Steve is a consultant that helps business optimize their performance. Steve resides in Connecticut with his four wonderful children in the teens or tweens and is always looking for the next adventure. He is an avid marathoner who raises money for research to prevent cancer. As a two time grad from the University of Michigan he bleeds maize and blue and also likes to dabble with writing.

2 Responses to The Great American Ballpark Tour – Any Man’s Dream

  1. Steve Mitzel says:

    Kale – you have to go to Wrigley and Fenway has been updated since 2005. They are the two most incredible parks in America.

  2. Kale says:

    I went to the old Yankee Stadium once. That was really special. It was the last year of its existence, and there was definitely a palpable sense of greatness just walking around that ballpark.

    Visited Fenway in 2005, for a tour, and I have to say, that place is kind of a dump! It made me realize that, sometimes, it’s time to give it up, or do a super-renovation. In fact, as much as no one likes to admit it, it was the same for Tiger Stadium in the late 90’s.

    To be honest, I don’t know if I ever want to go to Wrigley, as I enjoy watching baseball.