My parents know me too well.
For my birthday, they got tickets for a tour of Coors Field. I wonder how they knew I needed something to break up the monotony of the off-season? Maybe it was because I told them. Or maybe because I’ve been counting down the days until the season starts – only 48 left!
The tour was a great experience, and even made me feel a little bit like a VIP. After all, how many people get to go in the press box, suites, clubhouse, dugout, and meeting areas? Well, I guess the answer is anyone who takes the tour, but still, it was a real treat!
Wow, we were cold for this part of the tour. We are at the third deck listening to the guide tell about the history of the Rockies and of Coors Field. I was proud that I already knew a lot of the information, thanks to 100 Things Rockies Fans Should Know and Do Before They Die by Adrian Dater.
The guide said this was almost exactly how the field looked on Opening Day, April 26, 1995 (the first year the Rockies played at Coors). The only difference? Imagine a green field amid seats covered with 5 inches of snow. The field has a heating system beneath it that can melt all the snow within hours, and helps start growing the grass in February (otherwise, not usually the best time for grass). It was a bit strange seeing the stands completely empty, though. Hopefully they’ll be the exact opposite for every game this season!
Here’s a little fun fact. The longest home run ever hit by a Rockie at Coors landed in the doorway of the third deck furthest to the right in this photo. Last season, Cargo hit a walk-off homer to complete his cycle that landed in the third row of that deck, right below that same doorway. His homer was about 12 feet shorter than the longest, hit by Larry Walker.
This statue commemorates last year’s All-Star game in Anaheim, the home of Disneyland. Each team, as well as the National League and the American League, has a personalized Mickey. I especially liked the fact that Dinger is included on Mickey’s foot.
Welcome to the press box, and hopefully my future workplace. The guide told us this is a visitors’ press box, not KOA’s or FSN’s, sadly. He also explained that the people in the press box see their fair share of foul balls, then proceeded to point out several dents in the walls. It looks like I will need quick reflexes if I work here!
Unfortunately, we weren’t allowed in the Rockies clubhouse. However, the visitors’ clubhouse is the next best thing! The room holds 25 lockers (although the Rockies’ has twice as many, which are twice as large). The players get to recline on extremely comfortable couches, and, if they happen to win the World Series, they might even be allowed to dance on the tables. When the Red Sox won, the Big Papi, David Ortiz, did exactly that, leaving a cleat mark on the table as evidence.
Coors Field provides all toiletries players could ever want. This is the area they call they “beauty salon” where visiting players can find almost every brand of shampoo, deodorant, etc. known to man.
This is the visitors’ batting cage. While the Rockies have two cages, locate right next to the dugout, visiting clubs only have one, which is conveniently located as far from the dugout as possible. As our guide explained, this strategy, along with Colorado’s thin mountain air, hopefully makes players a little winded after they run from here to the field.
Once we got to the dugout, we wanted to act like the players do when they watch the game. The solution? We leaned on the railing!
Here is a better view of everyone in the dugout, as wel
l as the press boxes up above.
Every time a Rockies player goes to the All-Star Game, their name goes on the wall of Colorado Rockies All-Stars. Below are the three who went during the 2010 season – Ubaldo Jimenez, Troy Tulowitzki, and Keith Dugger. Hopefully these guys, as well as other players, including Carlos Gonzalez, will earn many more stars.
For anyone interested in taking a tour of Coors Field, I highly recommend it! The guide was knowledgeable and enthusiastic, and it’s a chance to see areas of the park that are otherwise unaccessable for fans. Go to the Rockies website for more information.
All photos are my original work.