Phightin’ Phans: My Opinion of Citizens Bank Park

This post is long overdue.  A couple Sundays ago myself and a friend of mine drove the two and a half hours from Westchester County to Philadelphia for the Atlanta Braves versus the Philadelphia Phillies.  Actually, this was one of the last games that Mark Teixeira played for the Bravos.

Nevertheless, I love going to different parks to check out the venue and the overall baseball fan experience.  So, as a new segment to Backwards K, here are my thoughts on the experience at Citizens Bank Park:

We arrived about two and a half hours prior to the game itself, which gave us plenty of time to scope out the place.  First off, Citizens Bank Park, the baseball stadium is in the same complex with Lincoln Financial Field, home of the Philadelphia Eagles, and the homes of the Philadelphia Flyers, 76ers, and Phantoms (AHL hockey affiliate of the Flyers).  I really liked that all the facilities were in the same area, rather than spread out (like New York).  It certainly makes parking easy since there is a ton of parking in order to accommodate different events happening at the same time.  I was able to find my car relatively easily after the game and the traffic to leave the area wasn’t too bad.  Since all the parking for all the sporting events are in the same place, I’m sure the Philadelphia “authorities” had ran the evacuation of the parking area hundreds of times.

On the outside, the stadium itself has a brick outer wall, very much in the Camden Yards model.  Very classy, yet modern.  We got up to the stadium and were able to walk around it for a little while before we went in and visited statues of Steve Carlton, Mike Schmidt, and Robin Roberts, some of the Phillie greats.

After we collected our tickets from the will call window, we made our way into the stadium. The field itself is below street level, which I found pretty cool.  On that lower concourse, you can see all around the stadium and look onto the field.  The concession stands are just that – stands – and there is no wall behind them that would block a fan’s view of the field.  Any fan could basically walk around that level and see the field.  One could even stand behind the lower level seating for standing room seating.  I was really impressed by the incredible views from that level, especially since I am so used to Yankee Stadium where there are walls that separate the concourse from the seating.

I thought the seats themselves were good and I had an unobstructed view of home plate from my left field “arcade” section seating (if you click the link on “view,” click section 235 for my view) .  The seat was nicely turned towards the action, was nice and wide to give me plenty of space and provided me with more than sufficient leg room.

The best part of my experience at Citizens Bank Park, however, was the behavior of the fans.  They were so into the game and were hanging in the balance on every single pitch.  Adam Eaton came in relief of Joe Blanton and was absolutely atrocious and they let him have it.  I haven’t heard a home team boo their own player so bad since Jack McDowell pitched for the Yankees, was booed out of Yankee Stadium, and promptly gave the fans the finger.  Beyond that, when an outfielder hit a home run (Pat Burrell and Jayson Werth each had one for the home team), the player was greeted back to his position with a standing ovation from the fans seated in that area.  It was great!  My favorite, however, was the grief the fans gave the poor Braves leftfielder, who was booed everytime he came out on the field except when he struck out looking to end the previous inning, when he was greeted with a standing ovation.  The Phillie fans also felt the need to mock the Braves’ trademark tomahawk chop, which was also awesome.  I like to believe that Yankee fans are some of the best fans on the planet, but the Phillie fans really impressed me with their intensity for this game, which was nothing more special than any of the other 81 home games.  The fans were more into that game than I have seen Yankee fans into a game in recent memory (and I did go to two Boston and two Met games in the Bronx this season).

Ultimately, the stadium was absolutely beautiful, there were a ton of home runs, the fans were phenomenal and the fan experience at Citizens Bank Park was top notch.

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One Response to “Phightin’ Phans: My Opinion of Citizens Bank Park”

  1. Phightin’ Phans: My Opinion of Citizens Bank Park | Atlanta Meetup News Says:

    […] View original post here: Phightin’ Phans: My Opinion of Citizens Bank Park […]

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