The best ballparks play to their particular strengths, whether it's an easily accessible location with skyline views, exhibitions honoring bygone greats, or craft beers served by fire pits overlooking left field. Some classics like Fenway Park, which celebrates 100 years in 2012 and still has hand-operated scoreboards, keep baseball's history alive, while others have introduced decidedly modern features like the synchronized music and light show that follows every home run at Detroit's Comerica Park.
Kids can unleash their inner baseball star via MLB 2K12 consoles at Target field in Minneapolis or tackle the Coca-Cola Superslide that stands 465 feet from home plate at San Francisco's waterfront AT&T Park. Adults, meanwhile, can enjoy wines sourced from nearby Napa Valley and paired with Dungeness crab sandwiches.
The fun may not always be old-fashioned these days, but it's still part of the all-American tradition of a day out at the ball game. As Walt Whitman put it: "Baseball has the snap, go, fling of the American atmosphere. It is the place where memory gathers." So take yourself out to one of the best baseball stadiums and start building those memories. --Yelena Moroz, See America's Best Baseball Stadiums
Even the highest seat in this stately two-level ballpark (the only one in MLB) is just 88 feet from the field, so prepare for terrific views of the action as well as the Pittsburgh skyline and the Allegheny River--where decked-out fans wait in boats and kayaks for a stray ball. On game days, the Roberto Clemente Park river walk closes to traffic so that you can walk across it to the stadium. Pup Nights on select Tuesdays, local favorites like Primanti Brother's Almost Famous sandwiches and Quaker Steak & Lube wings, and quirky entertainment like pierogi mascot races make a summer outing to PNC pitch perfect. <a href="http://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/americas-best-baseball-stadiums/3" target="_hplink">See More Baseball Stadiums Here</a> <em>Photo: © Vespasian / Alamy</em>
New York's culinary melting pot has come to Citi Field, which opened in 2009 with improved sightlines, a sunlit rotunda honoring Brooklyn slugger Jackie Robinson, and a lineup of gourmet ballpark food. Show up hungry to feast on lobster rolls from James Beard-Award-winning chef Dave Pasternack; finger-licking-good ribs from Danny Meyer's Blue Smoke (Meyer also runs the cultish Shake Shack and El Verano Taquería.); or "Meat the Mets," a Creole chicken, pepperoni, sweet Italian sausage, and jalapeño pizza by newcomer Two Boots. Wash it down with more than 60 beers, including local brews, and gourmet Coolhaus ice cream sandwiches for dessert. <a href="http://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/americas-best-baseball-stadiums/4" target="_hplink">See More Baseball Stadiums Here</a> <em>Photo: Tim Clayton / Corbis</em>
Fans in the Mile High City are treated to spectacular Rocky Mountain views, particularly from the purple-colored seats at precisely 5,280 feet above sea level. But keep your eye on the ball because games here move at a faster pace. High altitude dries and hardens the baseballs, so they actually fly 9 percent faster up in the mountains. Known as a "hitter's park," Coors Field tends to get high-scoring games with quite a few home runs. It's also a hit for cheap Rockpile bleacher seats (as low as $4) and the stadium's brick warehouse look, which fits in with the surrounding LoDo neighborhood. <a href="http://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/americas-best-baseball-stadiums/5" target="_hplink">See More Baseball Stadiums Here</a> <em>Photo: Russell Lansford / Icon SMI / Corbis</em>
The Little Havana-based Marlins Park, which debuted for the 2012 season, is already making a big splash--literally, with two 450-gallon tanks featuring nearly 100 tropical fish. Try the aquatic life yourself with a dip in the Clevelander's pool, a South Beach party outpost complete with animal-print-body-painted dancers and celeb DJs spinning at each game. A kaleidoscopic mosaic walkway, mango slaw-topped SoBe dogs, and a 73-foot marlin (and flamingo) sculpture that rotates to celebrate home runs also reflect Miami's flamboyant influence. <a href="http://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/americas-best-baseball-stadiums/6" target="_hplink">See More Baseball Stadiums Here</a> <em>Photo: ZUMA Press, Inc. / Alamy</em>
No park blends the old with the new quite like Camden Yards. Constructed over an old railroad station and what was once a café owned by Babe Ruth's father (now centerfield), the downtown stadium harks back to baseball's early days--even though it's just 20 years old. The stadium is largely credited with starting the league-wide trend toward parks built with an eye toward integrating neighborhoods and serving regional cuisine. Follow that smoky aroma over to Boog's Barbecue, where the thing to order is a pit beef sandwich topped with thinly sliced raw onions and secret sauce. <a href="http://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/americas-best-baseball-stadiums/7" target="_hplink">See More Baseball Stadiums Here</a> <em>Photo: Frank Vetere / Alamy</em>
The City by the Bay got an award-winning waterfront ballpark in 2000, witnessed some of outfielder Barry Bonds's record-setting home runs, and scored a World Series win in 2010. Fans can also cheer about the wine list sourced from nearby vineyards. Some people lie in wait, hoping to fish out long balls that splash into McCovey Cove (named in honor of Giants slugger Willie McCovey). Others scope out park attractions like the Coca-Cola Fan Lot, with its 26-foot-high by 30-foot-wide baseball glove; four twisty slides; and Little Giants Park, a kid-size replica. No tickets? Head to the south side right field wall for a free glimpse of the action through one of the four portholes. <a href="http://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/americas-best-baseball-stadiums/8" target="_hplink">See More Baseball Stadiums Here</a> <em>Photo: © Proehl Studios/Corbis</em>
As historic as the city of Boston, the Green Monster celebrates its 100th season in 2012 and remains much as it did on opening day. You don't need to be a die-hard Red Sox fan to appreciate its original architecture, the hand-operated scoreboard, and the red-painted seat in the right-field bleachers that marks Fenway's longest measurable homer (hit by Ted Williams in 1946). Whether you're singing "Sweet Caroline" or downing a pitcher at the nearby Cask 'n Flagon on Lansdowne Street, you're cementing its legacy. <a href="http://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/americas-best-baseball-stadiums/9" target="_hplink">See More Baseball Stadiums Here</a> <em>Photo: Richard T. Nowitz / Corbis</em>
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