The 10 Most Beautiful Stadiums in Major League Baseball

Adam MacDonald@adammacdoAnalyst IINovember 1, 2012

The 10 Most Beautiful Stadiums in Major League Baseball

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    From the Polo Grounds to the House that Ruth Built, Major League Baseball has been played in some wonderful and famous ballparks over the years.

    Some of the old parks are still around, in Boston and Chicago, while others have moved on and replaced their historic homes with more modern arenas.

    So here we celebrate the 10 most beautiful stadiums still being used today, naturally without any mention of the nightmares like The Trop and Citi Field.

10. Angel Stadium, Anaheim

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    Angel Stadium is a really pretty ballpark. It's comfortable, usually draws a large crowd and has a unique center field with that rock feature.

    However, actually being there is much less enjoyable thanks to the Thunderstix which annoy people who want to watch the game in peace and deafen everyone else. It's like Tropicana Field but with a nicer backdrop.

9. Busch Stadium, St Louis

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    This one is here pretty much purely for the view, but also because the stadium doesn't do anything wrong. It ticks all the main boxes for a modern ballpark and also opens up nicely for a brilliant view of the Gateway Arch and downtown St Louis.

8. PNC Park, Pittsburgh

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    PNC is tiny. It's really on the cusp of a major league park; any smaller and it would be a Spring Training or Triple-A facility. That does have it's upsides, though. You will never sit less than 90 feet from home plate and when no one turns up to watch the Pittsburgh Pirates play, it doesn't look so bad. It also offers an amazing view.

7. Citizens Bank Park, Philadelphia

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    From the Liberty Bell tolling for each home run to the brilliant atmosphere, Citizens Bank is a great ballpark. Some of the grandstand seats are awkwardly laid out but otherwise, this is a very comfortable place to watch baseball.

6. Yankee Stadium, New York

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    Had the old Yankee Stadium, which hosted the Bombers from 1923 to 2008, still existed, it would have been in the top three. However, the new version just doesn't have the same feel. The tiers are too spread out, rather than stacked on top of one another as they were in the old park, and much of the intimidating atmosphere has gone.

    That said, the new stadium is very impressive and very comfortable. It's epic in scale and you never feel cramped or claustrophobic.

5. Target Field, Minnesota

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    Minnesota Twins fans waited decades for an outdoor ballpark. The brilliantly-named Hubert H Humphrey Metrodome can be a very good arena for the NFL but it was never well-suited to baseball.

    Two years ago, the Twins opened up the less-brilliantly-named but far more suitable Target Field. It's an open-air stadium, free of a roof. While that means Twins home games can be delayed or postponed by rain for the first time since the 1980s, it does give them one of the prettiest home ballparks in the league.

4. Oriole Park at Camden Yards, Baltimore

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    When it opened 20 years ago, Camden Yards sparked a bit of a revolution. It looked pretty, it was comfortable, it was clearly only designed for baseball and suddenly, everyone wanted something similar. The cookie-cutter multi-purpose stadia just weren't as good any more.

    The old warehouse in right field lends Camden Yards a much older feel, despite the modern design. And it has played host to many classic moments, such as Eddie Murray's 500th home run and Cal Ripken, Jr's 2,131th consecutive game.

3. Fenway Park, Boston

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    Fenway Park, the oldest stadium in the major leagues, celebrated its 100th birthday this year. The Boston Red Sox moved to the Back Bay from the Huntington Avenue Grounds in 1912, just as they embarked on the most successful stretch in their history. Boston won the World Series that year, and again in 1915, 1916 and 1918.

    Over the years, Fenway has changed little and still exhibits many of the quirks and eccentricities modern ballparks are lacking. The ladder on the Green Monster, the Triangle in center field, the grandstand seats that face the wrong way: everything adds up to make the park truly unique.

2. Wrigley Field, Chicago

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    Wrigley Field is one of the most iconic ballparks in the game. Second in age only to Boston's Fenway Park, the 98-year-old stadium has been home to the Chicago Cubs since 1916. The famous ivy on the outfield wall was installed in the 1930s and the scoreboard is still operated by hand.

    However, despite hosting five World Series, Wrigley has played host to decades of misery. Ever since a foul-smelling goat was denied access to the park during the 1945 Series, the Cubs have failed to make it back to the Fall Classic.

1. AT&T Park, San Francisco

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    Not only have the San Francisco Giants just clinched their second World Series title in three years, they can also lay claim to the most beautiful ballpark in all of baseball. It's not even close, either.

    With the single-decked bleachers it feels old-fashioned but it's real defining feature is over the wall in right.

    AT&T is the only park in the majors directly accessible by boat and at every home game there are people in kayaks and canoes in the bay, waiting to catch a home run ball.

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