What a wonderful modern age we live in. Not only can you find out from me some tips and tricks for attending a game with grub on the brain, but you can do it from your own home. Gone are the days where one would have to stumble over an editorial in a magazine or hear it from a kind stranger on the bus. Nope, I've done my best to compile a short and sweet guide to getting your hands on cheap tickets and the best grindage (I know I just dated myself there) each stadium offers.
Tickets Tickets Tickets
Before we begin, here is the official site for the season schedule and tickets.
1st tip: Remember how long a MLB season is.
I think some of us forget how long a baseball season is. We're so used to seeing 80 or so games for both NBA and the NHL, shoot, NFL is only 16 games long. Perhaps such short seasons in comparison to MLB's whopping 162 games causes some sort of immediacy. I believe baseball fans either scramble for the tickets pre-season, worried they'll lose out on all of the good seats, or that other fans think it's just a lost cause like any sporting event, and that a game will be sold out. Remember this, there are 162 games in a baseball season! Not to mention, MLB stadiums are rather large. With both of those elements, you're guaranteed a chance at tickets.
I ran across this quick guide a little while ago, and this guy has some good ideas at thinking outside of the box on tickets. All of which I'll quickly dispense here. For more of an in-depth look, check out his stuff.
So we already covered the grand scale of a MLB season vs. your chances of attending a game.
2nd tip: Skip advanced sales.
Many of these advanced sales are just taking the market for a ride. I know, the off season has felt WAAAAAY tooo LOONNG for fans, and everyone wants the best seats yesterday. What some of you may not know is that stadiums like to charge a nice surcharge for preseason tickets, sometimes making an extra 20%. Don't forget, they do tend to hold tickets back for walk-up sales.
3rd tip: Use weather to your advantage.
Most fans, at least in my opinion, tend to be fair-weathered. At the slightest hint of cold, heat, rain or snow, the bleachers tend to be lighter than usual. Take advantage of this, go through a weather report and find some days that are chillier than usual, chances are, you'll be able to score some cheap tickets that very same day, perhaps better seats than usual.
4th tip: Go to weekday games.
Most fans prefer night games, plain and simple. It's not as hot, it's after work and things tend to be a little more "festive" with the work crowd letting down their hair. If you have the opportunity to take a day off from work, or you find yourself on a company holiday with nothing to do, check out ticket prices, you may be surprised.
5th tip: Big teams usually mean big ticket prices.
I think the title speaks for itself. Remember, it doesn't matter who your home team is, if big name teams like the Yankees or Red Sox are coming to your town, it's guaranteed that the ticket prices will be driven up. That's just the nature of the MLB universe, I'm afraid.
6th tip: Buy tickets same day.
Season ticket holders sometimes put their tickets up for games they won't or can't go to. They tend to drop their prices as the day of the game approaches. Love them or hate them, sites like Stubhub is where you'll find such tickets. Consider, possibly waiting for the last minute. Be brave and let it ride. ;)
7th tip: Befriend a season ticket holder.
Most people, unless they are retired and have nothing else they want to do, can't attend every single game. Find someone to share the love with you. Maybe, trade them those tickets to that musical that your work gave you. You never know...
Food Food Food
Instead of going on and on about this food and that. I figured I'd give you a current top ten of the best MLB stadiums by food, as well as a link to a Thrillist guide to what to eat at every stadium. Some of these foods sound great, and others, I'm going to have to take their word for it.
Top 10 Stadiums by Food!
Brought to you by Bleacherreport.
10. U.S. Cellular Field - Helmet Sundae
9. Turner Field - The Hammer
8. Target Field - Bigger Better Burger Bloody Mary
7. Citizens Bank Park - The Schmitter
6. Tropicana Field - Fan vs. Food Burger
5. Nationals Park - Strasburger
4. Chase Field - D-Bat Dog
3. PNC Park - The Closer
2. Great American Ballpark - Bacon Challenge
1. Globe Life Park - It seems because they don't have just one specialty, but three, that the Rangers' stadium takes the number 1 slot: Bacon on a stick with maple syrup. The Choomongus hot dog and the Beltre Buster Burger. Why does that make me so proud to call that stadium home? ;)
For more of a foodie-intensive guide to each stadium and the glutenous globs of awesome they serve, feel free to check out this Thrillist food guide.