Thursday, May 27, 2010

Coors Field

So I had to make a return trip to Denver to make up my rained out game, and I landed amidst a tornado warning and some pretty serious weather.  Unbelievably, the game was played and I got to see Cy Young candidate Ubaldo Jimenez smoke none other than the Arizona Diamondbacks.  So now I've seen them in San Diego, Arizona, Chicago, Atlanta, and Denver.  Unbelievable, and they've gone 0-5 in all of the games.

Location: Coors Field is located downtown in an area that reminds me a lot of Minute Maid Park, with a lot less skyscrapers.  It's on the corner of the urban district, and has some less than pretty spots, but also has some solid establishments in the area and has spurred some urban growth.  It was a 15 minute drive from my friend David Cummings' house, and we parked for free about 6 blocks from the stadium.  Another huge thank you to David, who hosted me for four days in April and took off from work again to pick me up from the airport and got up at 4:30 to drive me to the airport this morning. Huge thanks, man.

Some of the crazy weather 

Rockies in the background, view from the upper deck

Ballpark:  I wish they had the park facing the mountains, but it's still real pretty.  From the outside it has the red brick that looks a lot like MMP, and you can walk around to the upper levels and get some good views of Denver's downtown and the Rockies.  78% of the stadium was financed publicly with a 1/10% six-county sales tax increase, and the rest was financed by the Rockies' ownership group.

It's easy to walk around the stadium with its wider concourses, but there wasn't much special about it.  In that regard it reminded me a bit of AT&T Park - great location and they could have done a lot with it, but for some reason my experience fell a bit short of my expectations.

Purple line supposedly is a "mile high" line

Behind-the-plate shot

Area with memorable Rockies' moments. The guy directly below the sign was one of the worst moves in Astros' history

Food:  Your stadium staples, a burrito stand, a souped up hot dog stand, some sort of sandwich that contained BBQ brisket AND a hot link, Coors all over the place, a gluten-free stand, a salad stop, and others.  They had a pretty good variety and from what I saw, it all seemed to be pretty cheap.  David and I had pizza after he picked me up from the airport, so we didn't really indulge in anything at the game.  The largest beer was $6.50 and the hot dog was $4.50, for an SCPI of $11.

Game: Man, Ubaldo was on.  Every time he strikes someone out, they play the beginning of that Soulja Boy song where he goes "yooooooouuuuu," which was pretty cool once I noticed it.  David and I got to the park early for batting practice, and we knew the Diamondbacks were gonna get crushed when we only saw 2 home runs the entire round, which were made by the same person.  When Ubaldo left the game after the 8th, it was 7-0 and he was well on his way to his MLB leading 9th win. He's now 9-1 with a 0.88 ERA and looks like he'll be the All-Star game starter for the National League, although Halladay, Lincecum, and Wainwright are all in the mix and there's a month and a half left until the game.

"So she was all up in my face..."

Future Cy Young winner? Well he's thrown a no-hitter, at least...

Summary:  Pretty park, but could be better.  Cheap eats and a good team, plus a good game thrown by one of the game's best young pitchers.  Good company - overall a solid experience.  I would probably go back if I made it back to Denver, but there's so much to do in the surrounding area it might not fit into my schedule if there were other things I want to do.  So, it falls in the middle of the pack for me.

Location: 7.5
Ballpark: 7
Food: 7.5
Game: 8
Overall: 7.5

Record: 14-4 (10 straight - thank you Diamondbacks)
Giveaways: Still 5, hoping to pick some up on my trip to the Northeast next week.

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