Take 10 Tuesday: Baseball Week

In honor of Opening Day, I’m bringing you my version of the Top 10 Baseball Cities in America.

10. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania: Pittsburgh Pirates

PNC Park, Home of Pittsburgh Pirates

Pirates fans have had it rough, it’s been over 3 decades since they’ve seen a World Series or pennant win. Their 18 year losing-record streak could have left fans running away from this team. Instead, with the building of PNC Park, fans keep coming back. The stadium incorporates Pennsylvania steel into the design and the view from the 3rd base side includes beautiful views of the Roberto Clemente bridge, river, skyline, Mt. Washington, and trains. Even if there isn’t something great happening on the field, the trip alone to see the stadium, views, and continuously loyal fans makes it worthwhile.

9. Denver, Colorado: Colorado Rockies

Denver - LoDo: Coors Field - One Mile Elevation Point

Not only is Coors Field in the mile-high city, it is a mile-high stadium. In the 20th row of the upper deck, you’ll see a row of purple seats marking the 1-mile elevation. Because of its elevation, Coors Field is a hitter’s park with a high number of home runs, doubles, and triples. Coors Field holds over 50,000 Rockies fans and based on the high demand, a center-field bleachers section nicknamed “The Rockpile” was added.

8. Arlington, Texas: Texas Rangers

Rangers Ballpark in Arlington from across lake

Rangers Ballpark saw over 52,000 fans during Game 3 of the 2010 World Series. With their recent pennant win, fans from this town have been revived and are ready to retain their title. The park itself is featured around historic Texas but it has newly updates monitors mixing the old with the new. Due to high winds carrying balls, Rangers Ballpark is a hitter’s park and makes the game more exciting to watch.

7. Baltimore, Maryland: Baltimore Orioles

Cal Ripken pregame video montage

After the baseball strike in the 90s, many people gave up on baseball. Cal Ripken, Jr. was not one of those people. In 1995, he pushed fans to watch as he beat Lou Gehrig’s consecutive game record. The amount of fans only increased over the years, possibly due to their love of Camden Yards. Camden Yards was the first throwback stadium and fans come back every year to see the stadium and the team play, or maybe just to enjoy concessions like local white wines and crab cakes.

6. San Francisco, California: San Francisco Giants

Waiting for 714*

We liked AT&T Park so much we included it in yesterday’s San Francisco 5 Things to see post. The stadium is built facing China Basin so when home runs leave the park, kayakers can retrieve these “Splash Hits” from the water. The building of AT&T Park helped cement the Giants as part of the city. Before that, fans were leaving and the team was almost traded. Between the new stadium and Barry Bonds’ home run race, the Giants have regained their place in their fans’ hearts and they won the 2010 World Series to seal the deal. Click Here for the Best San Francisco Hotel Deals!

5. New York, New York: New York Mets/New York Yankees

NYC - Queens - Flushing: Citi Field - Bullpen Gate - Home Run Apple

In a town with two historic teams, there’s twice the reason to make the list. Citi Field is home to the Mets and opened in 2009 in Queens. It was a replacement for Shea Stadium and has over 15,000 fewer seats. Yankee Stadium also opened its doors in 2009 in the Bronx. The Yankees have won 27 World Series and 40 pennants so they’ve given New Yorkers a lot to cheer about over the years. While Citi Field is themed around New York and features bridges and a “Big Apple”, Yankee Stadium is themed around its predecessor and the team’s long history. Having two teams in the same town doesn’t come without a rivalry: when league interplay happens the “Subway Series” leaves bets being placed across town. The rivalry was never fiercer than in 2000, when both teams made it to the World Series that the Yankees won in 5.

4. Los Angeles, California: Los Angeles Dodgers

Dodger Stadium (Go Padres!)

Dodger Stadium is the third oldest park in baseball but that hasn’t scared fans away. Even the hours of LA traffic doesn’t leave fans behind. They don’t care if they arrive in the 3rd inning and have to leave in the 7th just to make it home, so long as they see their beloved team play. Dodger Stadium was built into the mountainside so fans can see downtown LA’s skyline from their seats. The weather here is also fantastic; between 1988 and 1999 over 850 home games were played without a single rain-out. Despite not making a World Series appearance since 1988, Dodgers still beat old attendance records proving they have some of the most loyal fans out there.

3. Chicago, Illinois: Chicago Cubs/Chicago White Sox

SOX vs cubs game 2

I’ve had the pleasure of seeing both of these teams play in their home stadiums and I have to say its another world entirely in Chicago baseball. I saw the White Sox play when their home was still known as Comiskey Park, but the newly renovated U.S. Cellular Field is still the same beloved field. The shining gem of Chicago is the beloved Wrigley Field.  The field is surrounded by tall buildings that have added rooftop seating so they can watch the game from above. Wrigley is the second-oldest field in baseball but it hardly shows its age beyond the feeling of nostalgia. Fans love this stadium for its ivy wall and hand-turned scoring in the outfield, they even forget that the Cubs haven’t won a World Series since 1908. The in-town rivalry here is known as the “Crosstown Classic” though some know it better as the “Cross Town Beat Down” which makes sense because there are no angrier fans in the Midwest than a Cubs fan scorned. Click Here for the Best Chicago Hotel Deals!

2. Boston, Massachusetts: Boston Red Sox

Fenway Park

There’s hardly a town more passionate about their sports teams or with more rivalries than Boston. The heat of the passion can lead to fistfights or shouting matches and every game is do-or-die to the fans. Loyal fans stuck around even through supposedly cursed years until the Red Sox finally won the 2004 World Series. It’s no wonder that every game at the oldest stadium in baseball, Fenway Park, has been sold out since June 2003. There’s a reason the beloved movie Field of Dreams includes a scene inside this classic stadium and it’s more than just the history of the ballpark, it’s because of the passion inside it.

1. St. Louis, Missouri: St. Louis Cardinals

Ballpark and Arch

Cardinals fans always top lists of being the best fans in baseball. They’re polite, full of Midwest charm, and they know their game. They don’t allow fair-weathered fans in St. Louis; each child is born and raised as a Red Bird. With the building of yet another Busch Stadium, fans come back to see not only a solid team but also the new throwback stadium. It’s no surprise that the new stadium led to the 10th World Series win for the team back in 2006. Though St. Louis might not have the population some other sports towns have, the popularity of the Cardinals in the Midwest has meant the highest per capita viewership of Cardinal games in all of baseball. As a St. Louis area resident myself, there is hardly a game that isn’t watched or listened to in my home.

If you’re wondering how a city like St. Louis can beat out Boston, look no further than the 2004 World Series. The Cardinals were swept in 4 games and still had the decency to stand and applaud the Red Sox on their away game win. Baseball has always been about rivalries but more than that it’s been about the American spirit and no town exemplifies that more than St. Louis.

Do you agree with our top 10? Outraged your favorite team isn’t on the list? Let us know!

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I'm Julie, I love to travel, I'm very hyper and I like to "hype" things and from that, TravelHyper was born. I'm a Missouri native and I cover St. Louis travel ideas as well as my own travels. I also like to focus on places I want to visit and budget travel ideas by creating trip plans. There's so much world out there and I hope you'll find that it's worth seeing and that vacation doesn't have to be out of reach to you.

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  • rygar

    No Phillies, are you serious, Colorado over Philadelphia. Wow.

    • http://www.travelhyper.com TravelHyper

      Phillies fans are too negative. As a Cardinals fan I’ve never quite gotten over the treatment JD Drew got from the Phillies fans. Phillies fans might be passionate about their team but they’re a little scary too. The team did help me in my fantasy league this year so maybe next year they’ll make the list.

      • eDubs

        You do realize that Drew was a right-win nutjob who was apparently the least favorite player in the locker room everywhere he played. Now I’m not saying that means he deserves batteries thrown at him, but the boos show me that Philly fans are onto something.

        By the way, if St. Louis won one stinking World Series between 1883-2007 they’d be pretty surly as well. St. Louis is a lousy sports town OTHER than baseball. Philly on the other hand puts their passion in other teams as well.

        • islander52

          I agree that the philly fans put so much passion in their teams, the entire state and city is incredibly boring, what else are you gonna do.

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  • guest

    St. Louis fans are jerks. Same with Cubs fans.

    • http://www.travelhyper.com TravelHyper

      You sound like a Cincinnati Reds fan. 

  • Rocco Rock

    Living all over the world St. Louis is no doubt the best fans. And I am a Yankees Fan. When I lived in St. Louis it is amazing how such a small market draws such a big number of fans. A game at Busch Stadium is quite the sight. 

  • Will Birch

    Are you serious? The Cincinnati Reds have the best city.

  • eDubs

    Pittsburgh ahead of Philly, are you serious? The Pirates couldn’t even sell out playoff games in the early-90s. Phillies had the best attendance in baseball in 2010 and 2011 and also the highest local TV ratings (an even more impressive stat considering how large the market is).

    I don’t mind Philly being left out of the top-ten, but Arlington, Denver, and Pittsburgh ahead of them and other cities such as Detroit, Cincinnati, Milwaukee, Cleveland, etc? Give me a break!

  • islander52

    Anyone who compares Cardinal fans with Cub fans does NOT know baseball. The most obnoxious fan in St. Louis is minor compared to all Cub fans.

  • islander52

    It’s has always been amazing to me how Card fans stand and applaud the opposition for good plays and accomplishments. That happens no where else in baseball. I’ve been to many cities and Philly fans in ANY sport are the worst. No class or knowledge of the games.

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