UPDATE: Well, good ole Paul Lukas from Uni-Watch has done some digging and apparently players are NOT wearing the pillbox hats during the ASG. Such a shame. Once I know what the pillbox hats are for, I’ll post an update.
Love visiting Minor League Baseball parks throughout the country (well, mostly in the south). Great piece on how to plan a trip to the best MiLB parks in the country!
Originally posted on Ben's Biz Blog:
Yesterday, new Ben’s Biz Blog contributor Ashley Marshall introduced himself via a Pac-Man inspired tour of the Minor League landscape. Today, he really goes the extra mile with this “ultimate” Minor League Road Trip itinerary. Please keep in mind, however, that this “ultimate” itinerary is entirely theoretical. Neither I (Ben’s Biz) or Ashley or anyone else will actually be doing it. For my 2015 road trip itineraries, click HERE.
Happy Opening Day, baseball fans. From Vancouver to West Palm Beach, San Jose to Winooski, Vt, the Minor Leagues bring baseball to millions of fans in thousands of communities.
Each year, there are 160 Minor League teams playing more than 8,000 games in 42 continental US states and one Canadian province across 14 leagues and six levels from Triple-A down to rookie ball. All this happens in a five-month, 152-day window from Opening Day on April…
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Out of all the major sports, baseball jerseys are probably the most normal sports jersey to wear around town. It might look a little strange to rock your 1995 Michael Jordan jersey made by Champion, but a baseball jersey is a nice, generally button down shirt, with embroidered logos, patches, etc.
With baseball season upon us, one of my greatest nerdy obsessions has returned: the love for baseball uniforms. They might seem a little dated (I mean, really, hats and polyester button down shirts, along with belts?), but baseball uniforms represent far more than the team on the field. They can represent an era in history, a strong memory you might have for a player or team who once wore a particular uniform, or you may simply appreciate the aesthetically pleasing look of a classic baseball jersey.
A while back, my good buddy Keith Lee posted a guest blog about his experience with baseball. Fast forward a few years later, Keith and I are both graduate students at the University of Florida. Keith is a coach and serves on the board for Gainesville Youth Baseball, the city league in town. Already a coach at the tee ball level for his son, Keith decided to take on an additional challenge this season and signed up to coach the 11-12 year old team. Looking for assistants, Keith asked a huge baseball fan that happens to stink at playing the game: me.
To say I was skeptical of our visit to Miami is probably a gross understatement. After all, Miami was home to the Marlins, a team best known for somehow managing to win two World Series titles during their 20 year history, only to blow up the championship teams, spending most of their existence woefully behind their NL East opponents. Adding to the skepticism was the Marlins 2012 rebranding and move to Marlins Park–an actual baseball field–as opposed to their previous home of Pro Player Stadium, Joe Robbie Stadium, Dolphins Park, or whatever the name du jour was for that particular year.
Marlins Park is the source of quite a bit of controversy, and for good reason. Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria wanted to keep his team in South Florida and pledged to move the team into Miami proper. Some doubted that baseball could actually flourish and after nearly 20 years of sparsely attended games, no one would blame the Marlins for heading west to Las Vegas or north to Charlotte, North Carolina. Instead–much to the chagrin of Miami taxpayers–Loria got his wish and a big taxpayer funded stadium was built on the site of the old Orange Bowl in the heart of Miami’s Little Havana district.
For as long as anyone can remember, Florida has been a hotbed for baseball. When spring training first started, Florida was the place to be, with it’s fantastic late-winters and early springs. It’s a state that is home to fifteen MLB teams during spring training, two MLB teams, and a litany of minor league teams. To say that Florida is a great place to see baseball is an understatement (unless you’re frying at a Minor League game in July or August). During our short jaunt through the east part of the state, we visited two MiLB parks (one game was rained out) and paid a visit to Jeffrey Loria’s gaudy palace in Miami. Each of our three stops will have a dedicated blog post, and if you want to see additional pictures from the trip, please check out our Facebook page!
Baseball season is well underway, and after a silent 2013 that unfortunately featured no visits to new ballparks, RFTHT is back in 2014 and we’re excited to be visiting the Daytona Cubs and Miami Marlins in early May. Aside from both being in Florida, there couldn’t be fewer similarities between the two teams and their parks. Like the Chicago Cubs, Daytona plays in a ballpark that hits the century mark this year. Renamed Jackie Robinson Ballpark, the Cubs’ home is quite significant, as it is home to the first place Jackie Robinson played an MLB game (spring training 1946).
The Marlins meanwhile, play in owner Jeffrey Loria’s gaudy palace to South Florida overindulgence. Whether it’s the sculpture beyond the center field wall that looks like something out of a 1980s-Miami acid trip, the nightclub, or the fish tanks behind home plate, Loria spared no expense with his new stadium when it opened in 2012. We’re all quite excited to see this ode to gluttony that houses the
Florida Miami Marlins.
If you’re interested in following our adventures in real time, check us out on Facebook or Twitter. Also, I’ll try to post a picture or two on Instagram, so feel free to follow us on any of those three formats.
Stay tuned for updates!