You can take baseball out of Brooklyn, but can’t take the
baseball out of the Brooklynite. Since pro baseball’s return to the borough in 2001, the Brooklyn Mets continue to draw
phenomenally well in the short-season New York-Penn League. With a great location on Coney Island, and an even better atmosphere,
there’s no better place to catch a minor league game.
2. FirstEnergy Stadium, Reading,
PA (Phillies AA affiliate, Eastern League)
as “Baseballtown” for good reason – just ask anyone who’s played here. Reading has loved their
Phillies since 1967, and you can sense it in the large crowds, strong atmosphere, great ballpark and the history all around
the concession stands.
3. Raley Field, Sacramento, CA (Athletics AAA affiliate,
Pacific Coast League)
attendance leaders in all of minor league baseball for several years now, the River Cats put on a great show and have great
fans in the California state capitol, one of the few Triple-A teams to fill most of their seats regularly.
LeLacheur Park, Lowell, MA (Red Sox Class A affiliate, New York-Penn League)
Good luck finding a ticket to the Spinners, a short-season
New York-Penn League affiliate just outside Boston but deeply entrenched inside Red Sox Nation. A simple, smartly designed
ballpark with a great atmosphere, sight lines and viewpoints, it’s one of the best places to witness a minor league
game – assuming you can get a ticket!
5. Fifth Third Field, Dayton, OH (Reds A affiliate,
when it first opened, you’d find scalpers outside the ballpark – scalpers for a minor league baseball game!
Dayton hasn’t lost any love for its beloved Dragons, an affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds, which is just an hour
away. A quaint downtown ballpark with a good atmosphere, this is a charmer not to miss.
Midway Stadium St. Paul, MN (Independent, American Association)
The Saints continues to be on the leading edge of the bizarre minor league promotion
and publicity stunt, providing fans plenty of in-game and between innings entertainment you won’t find anywhere else
on the planet.
7. Avista Stadium, Spokane, WA (Rangers Class A affiliate, Northwest League)
When you visit Avista Stadium, you feel
like you’re in Northeast Washington, from the mountain backdrops to the farm-like equipment beyond the outfield fences
to the friendly and knowledgeable staff and animated fans that love their Spokane Indians.
Hadlock Field, Portland, ME (Red Sox AA affiliate, Eastern League)
Welcome to Fenway Park North, Vacationland style. Maine’s only pro baseball team,
the Sea Dogs, drew incredibly well when they were a Marlins affiliate. Now that they’re a Red Sox affiliate,
you need to buy your tickets in advance to find a seat inside a fairly well-designed ballpark with a good urban location,
multiple seating options and fun fans.
9. Dutchess Stadium, Wappingers Falls, NY (Rays
Class A affiliate, New York-Penn League)
Valley Renegades fans and a well-run franchise make this a destination not to miss. Few minor league ballparks boast
a better atmosphere and between innings entertainment.
10. Riverwalk Stadium, Montgomery,
AL (Rays AA affiliate, Southern League)
on the site of an old rail yard, this ballpark of the Biscuits in downtown Montgomery is incredibly well-designed and
has been a huge hit with fans in Alabama’s state capitol for its great downtown location on the riverfront, sight lines
and other viewpoints.
11. Clipper Magazine Stadium, Lancaster, PA (Independent,
Atlantic League, Lancaster Barnstormers)
Bethpage Ballpark, Central Islip, NY (Independent, Atlantic League, Long Island Ducks)
13. People's Natural Gas Field, Altoona, PA
(Pirates AA affiliate, Eastern League, Altoona Curve)
14. Hammons Field, Springfield,
MO (Cardinals AA affiliate, Texas League, Springfield Cardinals)
15. Autozone Park, Memphis, TN (Cardinals AAA affiliate, Pacific Coast League, Memphis
Whataburger Field, Corpus Christi, TX (Astros AA affiliate, Texas League, Corpus Christi Hooks)
17. Municipal Stadium, Quebec City, QC (Independent,
Can-Am League, Quebec City Capitals)
Lindquist Field, Ogden, UT (Dodgers Rookie affiliate, Pioneer League, Ogden Raptors)
19. Baseball Grounds, Jacksonville, FL (Marlins
AA affiliate, Southern League, Jacksonville Suns)
20. Shaw Park, Winnipeg, MB (Independent, Northern League, Winnipeg Gold Eyes)
21. Bosse Field, Evansville,
IN (Independent, Frontier League, Evansville Otters)
22. Wuerfel Park, Traverse City, MI (Independent, Frontier League, Traverse City
Jackie Robinson Ballpark, Daytona, FL (Cubs High-A affiliate, Florida State League, Daytona Cubs)
24. Louisville Slugger Field, Louisville, KY
(Reds AAA affiliate, International League, Louisville Bats)
25. Durham Bulls Athletic Park, Durham, NC (Rays AAA affiliate, International League,
Some 10 years ago few would have imagined that Single-A
and Short-Season A ball clubs would regularly sell out games, let alone seasons. But it's happening, in
places like Fifth Third Field in Dayton, Ohio where there's a waiting list for the club's Midwest League season tickets, and on
Coney Island in Brooklyn. Just a stone's throw away from the Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest, the Mets New
York-Penn League affiliate has been raking in the dough since the borough's baseball rebirth in 2001.