Sunday, November 11, 2018

Progressive Field

Progressive Field
2401 Ontario Street
Cleveland, OH 45202

September 23, 2018

We'd like to start this post off by informing you that the Indians stop offering guided tours in September. Why is this important? Because we have no information on this stadium, which means many of the details that we will give you are fabricated. We will tell you which tid bits are actual facts just in case you use our blog posts to plan your baseball travels, but we will not point out the lies. Could we have Googled? Sure. But why would we? That's extra work and you're not paying us.

Our first photos at Progressive are sunny. Warm. Not crowded. You may ask yourself, "how early did the TBB have to get to the game in order to get such perfect shots?" We will tell you. Six hours.
These are players that are extremely important in Indians' history. Most likely. A guided tour probably would've clarified. 
Pretty sure this is the last time the Indians won the American League Championship Series. 
The team owner is probably obsessed with Abbott and Costello. Clearly. 
You see, way back when we first purchased tickets, this game was at 1:10pm start. It's actually printed on our tickets. However, several weeks prior to the game, the powers to be apparently changed the time to 7:10 pm so that it could air on ESPN. Did they send us an email? No. Did we check the internet machine beforehand? No. Why would we? We fly by the seats of our pants in every other aspect of our lives, so why would this day be any different?

Therefore, on Sunday morning, we walked all the way to the field wondering why the streets were so empty and why the parking lots were deserted. Did we check the portable internet machine for an answer to this mystery? No. Lisa wondered where the street vendors who sold Indians' merchandise were. Well, obviously because it was Sunday and street vendors do not work on Sundays. Duh. Only explanation (it's amazing that the both of us actually have retirement plans). We take more photos. We take more selfies. We make it all the way to the team store only to discover that it's locked. That was the moment that Lisa checked the portable internet machine and discovered that it was no longer a day game.

Thankfully, the team store opened at 12 pm and we only had to wait around for a few minutes, so it wasn't a total waste. Lisa was able to buy Slider for $16 and our hats were $25.
The good news is that we had plenty of time to walk back to our hotel, change, and head to a nearby sports bar to watch the Giants/Texans game.
We returned to the scene of the crime around 6pm. We took additional photos outside the stadium in our new hats.
We were approached by two cameramen asking if we'd like to be on ESPN. Um, yes. We were instructed to shout, "Go Tribe!" Because we clearly blended in with the locals. We did exactly as we were told, but then Lisa added, "29 down, 1 more to go!" One of them rolled his eyes at us. We suspect we never made it on ESPN.

Inside the ballpark, we wandered around, scoping the scene and potential food stands. We were denied access to pretty much everything, including the kids' clubhouse. We were not even allowed to step foot into the foyer of the elevator banks. We had to use a special escalator and/or elevator for people without fancy tickets. We do not recall the Indians being so pro-"separation of the classes" in the movies, Major League and Major League II.
As we mentioned in the Comerica Park guided tour post, Progressive Field has the largest scoreboard in the league. This is actual fact. We just learned about it in Detroit, not in Cleveland.
This area here in right field is standing room only. We think. We overheard the person next to us tell another fan, but it is possible that she's full of shit.
The ballpark is a lot smaller than we would have guessed from the outside. Since we had nothing else to do and we weren't quite hungry yet, we headed up to our seats.
We had the most annoying pair of Red Sox fans sitting behind us. Yes, we are by nature, biased against the Red Sox, but we swear we're not exaggerating. They weren't "drunk loud" or rude, but the kind of loud where you feel like you're involved in their conversation even though you aren't. We heard everything and they never stopped talking. It was hard to concentrate on the actual game with two Joe Buck wannabes sitting behind us. You'd think that there would be moments of silence over the span of 11 innings, but there wasn't. The only time they stopped talking is when one of them left to use the bathroom.

This is how close we ever got to taking a photo with Slider, but we will admit that he was the most interactive mascot we've seen. He was visible during the entire game and made it a point to visit each section. Most mascots keep to the field level and only appear during specific times during the game.
We headed to Happy Dog for food in the 5th. Lisa ordered the Slider Dog and Serena ordered the Southern Style BBQ dog. They were $11 and $10.50 apiece.
The hot dogs were cooked perfectly. Serena had to eat hers with a fork though because she literally could not pick up the hot dog and the bun itself quickly fell apart because it was so heavy with toppings. Lisa was pleasantly surprised by how good the Fruit Loops tasted atop of her dog.

Before heading back to our seats, we grabbed ice cream in a helmet cup for $6 from Pierre's. Here, they offer real ice cream or that fake ass soft serve ice cream if that's your preference. Both of us chose Moose Tracks, which is vanilla ice cream with fudge and peanut butter cups.
At the conclusion of the 5th inning, there was a Hot Dog Derby between the condiments to determine the overall season winner and to our delight, Onion won. Girl power, we always say Lisa is particularly fond of the fact that Onion runs with her leopard print handbag.

The most disappointing fact about this stadium is its lack of acknowledgement to the movie, Major League. That movie is the only thing that's interesting about this franchise. And the mascot. He's adorable. The only reference to Rick Vaughn in the entire ballpark was us:
We're not saying that they needed to retire Pedro Cerrano's, Rick Vaughn's, Jake Taylor's, or even Roger Dorn's jersey numbers (if we owned the team, we would've, but that's hardly the point), but jeez. Something. Maybe even a few funny jokes tying into the rallies on the scoreboard. Not one chord of Wild Thing was played. It was above and beyond depressing.

Thankfully, the Indians pulled out the win in the 11th 4-3. Finally, we attended a game in which the home team won. Maybe our luck is finally turning around. It only took 29 stadiums.

Sunday, November 4, 2018

Progressive Field Guided Tour

Nothing to report on this front as the Cleveland Indians only offer guided tours May 1-September 1, which makes total sense. Good times. Two thumbs up.

Sunday, October 28, 2018

Comerica Park

Comerica Park
2100 Woodward Avenue
Detroit, MI 48201

September 21, 2018

Since we did the guided tour of the park earlier that day, we didn't have to get to the game too early. We got there around 6:00 for a 7:10 pm game time. After snapping our countdown photo outside the gates, we headed inside to take all of our photos of childish things.
The Big Cat Court turned out to be where all of the best things are, but we'll get into more on that later. We stopped here specifically to ride the tiger carrousel for $2.
From here, we knew we wanted to ride the ferris wheel, so we headed in that direction. On the way, we passed the FOX Sports guys.
And also, this crap:

The ferris wheel was close by and also cost $2.
Someone recommended to Lisa that she get the margarita yard stick. She loves margaritas, so this felt like a no brainer. She ordered the Tiger Fuel, which is basically creamsicle flavored. Unfortunately, she can't tell us if there was rum or tequila in the drink because the woman at the counter was the rudest woman that we met in the entire trip (everyone else has been super, super nice) and had zero information. Plus, Lisa could hardly taste any alcohol. The drink cost $11 and there was no Detroit logo on the cup, which was disappointing.
We had taken a guided tour of the ball park earlier that day and wanted to say hello to our tour guide, Bob, so we headed up to the Pepsi Porch where he was stationed.
It was almost game time by this point, so we rushed to get to our seats. The pitching matchup was Ian Kennedy against Francisco Liriano and the game was total trash. Just trash. It was a painful first half to watch.
The sad part is that no one was at the game. It's such a beautiful park and there's no one there to enjoy it. We understand that the team is bad, but there's so much to do and eat at the park! And there really isn't a bad seat in the house.
In the 4th, a group of Chevy's race around the field.

After the race, we decided to find food. Lisa read an article that talked a lot about a brisket stuffed corn muffin and she knew she had to have it. Most of the people we talked to at the game, including Bob, agreed that we would most likely would find it in the Big Cat Court (even though none of them actually heard of it themselves). In the Big Cat Court, Serena got excited about a lot of things - the Greek stand's loaded fries, specialty hot dog stand, Gurnsey's ice cream stand (which served legit ice cream in a helmet cup instead of soft serve), and a fried food stand that offered Nutella and apple pie stuffed egg rolls and elephant ears in addition to the traditional chicken fingers. There was a lot. But no stuffed corn bread.

Serena was torn between the loaded fries or the hot dogs.
She ran excitedly back and forth between both and ended up settling on the hot dogs. While she stood on line, Lisa went in search for the corn muffin. Torn between the An Ode to Detroit and Mac Daddy Dogs, Serena ended up buying both. And then eating both. For $6.75 each. The hot dogs themselves were okay, but the mac and cheese and brisket was delicious.
Lisa returned from her search disappointed. No one had been able to help her find the corn muffin. In fact, one employee directed her back to the Big Cat Court. She was starting to wonder if this was an urban legend. She vowed that if we did find it, she'd share its location with the masses so that others wouldn't suffer as she suffered. Finally, one employee at the hot dog stand actually knew what she was talking about and solved the mystery.

So here it is. The secret. The brisket stuffed corn muffin can be found at Beer Hall near section 134 and the ferris wheel. It cost Lisa $7.50.
Unfortunately, Lisa wasn't in love. The brisket and cheese really sat on top of the muffin instead of stuffed inside the muffin like advertised. The brisket was chewy, but the muffin was very good. She also felt like there needed to be more brisket in order to meet the expectations she had hyped it up to inside her head.

As if all of the food we ate wasn't enough, before we headed back to our seats, we decided we needed ice cream because it was real and not soft serve. For $6.50, we got three scoops in a helmet. The ice cream was delicious, but we feel like they needed more variety in their flavors: vanilla, chocolate, raspberry vanilla swirl, butter pecan, cookies n cream, and mint chip. Five of the six flavors are vanilla-based. It's just a little odd.
The Tigers nearly had a walk off, but then f*cked it up with two outs and men on first and second. It was depressing. The final score was 4-3. We stayed after to enjoy the postgame fireworks.