Travel

Let’s Play Ball: Where to Experience America’s National Sport of Baseball

American Baseball FieldOne of the best things about traveling is experiencing new cultures and what better way to experience sports culture than by hearing the crack of a bat at a Baseball game. Every major city has a team, but they don’t all have incredible stadiums known as ballparks full of history.

Getting tickets is easy, ask at the hotel reception. They are affordable and pretty much guaranteed to provide you with a few hours of entertainment and fun. But, what is Baseball all about and where should you go to watch it?

 

Best Ballparks to Enjoy a Baseball Game

Nearly all the major cities have a baseball team, either Major League or Minor League. But for the best action and grand stadiums watch a team from Major League Baseball (MLB). Here are some top picks:

Boston: Fenway Park

One of the most famous baseball teams in the World are the Boston Red Sox and they play at Fenway Park, near to Kenmore Square. Fenway Park is the oldest stadium in MLB, it was built in 1911. It is one of only two classic parks still in use in MLB. The original features, may not be modern, but they are authentically rich and this old-school style adds a spark of electricity to the atmosphere during play. Book tickets in advance as every home game is sold out!

Chicago: Wrigley Field

The second remaining classic-style ballpark is Wrigley Field, home to the Chicago Cubs. It opened a few years after Fenway Park in 1914. Wrigley Field is famous for its ivy-covered brick outfield wall, the iconic red canvas over the main entrance and the unpredictable wind patterns off Lake Michigan.

Los Angeles: Dodger Stadium

The LA Dodger’s play at Dodger Stadium and have done so since 1962. This is the 3rd largest stadium in the league, with a capacity of 46,056 and the team has appeared in more World Series Championship Finals than any other team, 18 times, with 7 wins. After a few days relaxing at Santa Monica beach, visiting the tar pits and walking down the Hollywood Walk of Fame, take in a ball game.

Read more about Los Angeles:

New York: Yankee Stadium

The New York Yankees are the most successful team in the sport of Baseball with 27 wins at the World Series. To see them throw a pitch head to the Bronx and visit Yankee Stadium. The notorious player Babe Ruth famously played for the New York Yankee’s after the Boston Red Sox sold him to their biggest rivals, in 1918.

Find out more about New York City:

Understanding Baseball

The most basic way to explain Baseball is, it’s a game about throwing the ball, hitting the ball, and catching the ball. But it is a little more complicated than that.

As a batter, the object of the game is to hit the ball without it being caught and far enough away that they have time to run around the diamond-shaped field, past the 3 bases and make it home. This is called a home run.

As a fielder, your objective is to get the batter out, as soon as possible and so prevent them from scoring. There are multiple ways to do this, for example, a fielder catching a hit ball before it has bounced and a baseman receiving the ball before the runner arrives at the base.

For more information about being out and scoring click here.

Baseball on Film

Get yourself in the mood to enjoy the game of Baseball, by watching a few great films about the sport. As well as being entertaining it may also help you to get to grips the World and rules of Baseball

For the ultimate in baseball, films watch Bull Durham (1988). The film is funny and warm-hearted, with a hint of romance and lots of minor league baseball action. It stars the great Susan Sarandon and Kevin Costner, plus Tim Robbins. It is virtually impossible to not enjoy this film. Other popular baseball movies include Field of Dreams (1989), another Kevin Costner favorite and A League of Their Own (1992), which is a great female lead story about women stepping up and playing baseball during World War II when many young men were unavailable as they were serving their country overseas. For a more recent baseball film, watch the drama, Moneyball (2011) where Brad Pitt tries to form a baseball team on a lean budget.

Hotels

The baseball parks discussed are based in major cities that offer a range of hotel experiences, to cater to everyone’s budget. For special discounts and to take advantage of loyalty programs, always book directly with the hotel. Find a hotel that is either within walking distance of the stadium or is located on a public transport direct route.

The Major League Baseball season has started! It operates from early spring until the end of September. If you are visiting the US during this time, inject some American Sporting Culture into your trip with lots of cheers, a couple of beers and a juicy hot dog at the local ballpark.

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