Some tour churches, I tour stadiums | PostIndependent.com
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Some tour churches, I tour stadiums

Bringing it homeJoelle MilholmGlenwood Springs, CO Colorado

Major League Baseball stadiums are one of the most fascinating landmarks a city can have. They reveal the city’s character and values, and by sitting in its bleachers you can see the personality of its fans.That’s why it’s a goal in my life to take in a game at every MLB stadium. I’ve been to AT&T Park, the Ballpark in Arlington, Coors Field, Fenway, the Oakland Coliseum, PETCO, old Three Rivers Stadium before it got torn down, Tropicana, Wrigley Field and Yankee Stadium.On Sunday, I added Dodger Stadium to the list.I was on a family trip to Los Angeles, when we noticed that the Rockies were playing the Dodgers and couldn’t pass up the chance to see a game.I was also hoping to see the Rockies pull off a win, but when I saw that Brad Penny was starting, the chances of that decreased significantly.Even though the Rockies had Jeff Francis on the mound, Penny still got the best of Colorado as the Dodgers won 4-3. It was exciting, however, when Todd Helton blasted a two-run homer in the eighth to take the lead and four of us stood up and cheered in the midst of glaring Dodger fans cloaked in blue. Of course, Jorge Julio blew the lead and gave up two runs in the bottom of the eighth, but it was still fun anyway.As far as the stadium goes, Chavez Ravine was much more picturesque than it looks on TV. It is completely secluded and it feels like you are in Dodgerland. There’s a big blue sign that says Think Blue outside the outfield walls – like baseball’s version of the Hollywood sign, which is barely visible over the left corner of the field.Looking at the mound, all I could think of was how Sandy Koufax and Don Drysdale used to frequent it. Gazing between first and second base, I could picture Kirk Gibbson circling the bases with his fist-pumping trot after smacking the game-winning, pinch-hit homer in game one of the 1988 World Series.While Jackie Robinson never played there, as he retired six years before Dodger Stadium opened in 1962, it was still interesting to see his number retired there in his real Dodger blue that had been hanging up since 1972 – long before the MLB retired it in 1997.On the outside of the stadium hung giant banners of current players – Penny, Nomar Garciaparra, Jeff Kent, Russell Martin, Juan Pierre and all of the Dodger regulars. Same thing on the inside – posts were covered with banners of players.It was a very personal touch to the stadium that made it seem like fans really embrace their Dodgers. This is a feeling I loved about the Rockies when the Blake Street Bombers were around, but it doesn’t feel like they’ve had it ever since.The only downside of the day outside of the Rockies losing, was that it was 91 degrees and a very hot afternoon to be sitting in the sun. Luckily, the game wasn’t sold out and we were able to ignore our seating assignments and move up to the top of the stadium where the overhang of the structure provided shade. I don’t know if that is what it was meant for, but it sure did work out nicely.So with Dodger Stadium down, there are 20 more parks I have to see. Of course, by the time I do that, old ones will have been torn down and new ones put up, so my stadium-seeing conquest will continue to be a lifelong pursuit.Contact Joelle Milholm at 384-9124 or jmilholm@postindepentend.com.


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