In sports, it is commonly said that a player has ‘heart’, whether it be on or off the field. This term is not identified by any statistics of his/her career, but more by personality, character, aura…all things that define who that player is but yet, cannot be put on paper. The same is true when grading a ballpark. But instead of heart, stadiums have atmosphere.
Publishing-giant Forbes recently released its ranking for America’s Best Ballparks and graded each stadium according to a list of five criteria: intangibles, fan participation, accessibility, affordability and food. While Forbes’ grading system leveled the playing field to compare parks fairly, it is a bit too structured to really capture what makes a ballpark great. Assigning a grade to ‘intangibles’ proves this point. How can something be graded that cannot even be touched or explained?
Regarding their list…and, to no surprise, historical staples such as Fenway, Wrigley and Camden Yards landed in the top five while both Citi Field and the new Yankee Stadium joined Busch Stadium in the top 10. Sorry fellow Phils fans… Citizens Bank Park creeped in at number 11.
Check out Forbes’ complete list and let us know what your favorite ballpark is and why.