Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Salt Lake Bees

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Sunset at Smith's Field
For a 20 year-old stadium Smith’s Field is holding up well. Much like myself, it looks as good today as it did during its inaugural season in 1994. With signature twin towers flanking the entrance, fans are greeted to a wide concourse loaded with baseball fare. And some exciting hardball as well. We were treated to an offensive display that included 8 homers and a total of 24 runs (in which the Bees lost 15-9).

Rockies in the Background
For those not interested in the game, but somehow ended up at that ballpark, you can take in a striking view of the Rocky Mountains over the outfield wall. The area surrounding the outfield berm is also greened with trees and shrubs providing a respite from the heat or sun when needed. Smith’s Field fits in well with Salt Lake City, providing an above average ballpark that sports players bound for Anaheim in the MLB. On this night, we watched the LA Angels David Freese on a rehab assignment. He appears healthy….he smacked one of the 8 dingers.

I was also able to get input on what the games are like from a different perspective. I had a date for the game. Autumn Henson, eldest daughter of the fabulous Henson clan, accompanied me and made me the envy of the rest of the stadium. She found the game fun and the dog good (she is still under the age of 18, so since she is technically not an adult I will cut her immense slack for putting ketchup on her dog).

Bun-while fresh, it was cold. Hot dogs are supposed to be at least warm. This doesn’t help.
Autumn's and My Dog (mine DOES NOT have ketchup)
Taste-the Weinerschnitzel frank was tasty and earns an above average score.
Price-$3.75 for the regular dog is a good deal by AAA standards.
Toppings-If you want to be a AAA team you have to put out AAA condiments. Where was the kraut or the jalapenos?
Portability-cardboard boats are challenge enough. SLC provides a heavy paper boat. Virtually useless in getting the dog to the seat intact.
It Factor-the Bees do have a Southwest Dog and a few other specialty dogs. Better than a lot of parks but not enough draw for top score.

Location-near downtown.
Access-one could bike, drive, take light rail or in some cases walk.
Cleanliness-top score.
GA Ticket Price-$10 would be ok for a seat with a back, or at least a bleacher. For a grass berm seat it is overpriced.
Fans-friendly, but they obviously had something better to do this night. The excess in home runs helped fuel the excitement. The ballpark was about 20% full. Yes, it was a Monday, school is still in and it isn’t exactly summer in Salt Lake City yet and the score takes this into account. Still, the Bees were coming off of a road trip. People of Salt Lake City...get to the ballpark!
Ambiance-while a clean and modern facility, Smith’s Field didn’t have a particular baseball vibe to it. Its design is also a tad unimaginative, caught somewhere in between wanting to be a retro stadium and modern ballpark. An overall score or 45 is respectable and worthy of a dog at the park if in SLC.

DogBallparkTotal Dog/Game
Portability2GA Ticket Price4
It Factor3Fans4

Autumn Henson and I on the Berm

During the few days I was waiting for the Bees to come back from their road trip I was able to see some of the surrounding area of Salt Lake City. While SLC may not have earned a top score in the hot dog/baseball experience, take a breath and look around...you live in Salt Lake City...and for that you are truly lucky.

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