A GREAT view of the field at AT&T Park in Chattanooga during their pre-season open house!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Wild Pitches

As I mentioned previously, we just made our way through some other states to the east of Kentucky. I am still sorting out my photos and will get them up soon.

Every park is exciting. It was great seeing the old Durham Bulls park from the movie, though their new park is full of character too. Seeing the old park used by the Greenville Braves was fascinating, as it has only been 5 years or so since organized baseball moved out, but it looks very abandoned these days.

We crossed paths with a couple of older guys (one of them admitted that he was in his 80s, though he didn't look it!). They were visiting parks and asked for directions. They had played pro am ball some time ago. One of the guys said he was DJ Mitchell (currently of the AA Yankees) grandfather!

We saw these guys a couple of times, as they were out visiting the same parks as us around Greensboro.

We talked to many cool people at each of the parks we visited. Savannah, Augusta, Kannapolis, and Hickory all had great staff who took time out to show us around and chat about baseball. More on each of those parks and their staffs later.

Even after visiting many parks, there are some things I see that I would love to see other parks do.

I think the "Build A Bear" mascot thing is cool. Call me a giant goofball, but I love mascots. A big, quality stuffed mascot is great.

Other merchandise that I like at parks includes postcards. More teams should sell postcards of their stadiums. Oh, and Kannapolis sells a really cool 6 foot long panoramic photo.

Kannapolis had a map up, showing where each of the members of the team are from. On a previous baseball road trip through PA, the Iron Pigs had a cool display. They had a huge map up, with pictures of fans wearing their Iron Pigs gear next to notable landmarks.

I do wish parks would try to get more original with their music. I wish the phrases "Who lives in a pineapple under the sea" and "Everybody clap your hands" would go away. And the YMCA. Yes, it is a cool song, but I am not sure if I would call it a family friendly song.

Still, you can't beat relaxing at a minor league park at the end of a day.

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