BONUS EXTRA STADIUM (31)
31. London Stadium
BORING BANK SPONSORS (30-25)
30. Suntrust Park
29. Citizens Bank Park
28. Comerica Park
27. PNC Park
26. Chase Field
25. Citi Field
We get it. You needed cash to pay for the 50% of the park that the poor taxpayers didn’t have to cough up for, and some local bank came in with the highest offer. Some of these names aren’t even that bad. I might have believed that some bloke called Tony Comerica was actually the founding father of Detroit baseball if you told me the story in a convincing fashion. But the fact remains that they’re boring and soulless. Citi Field comes top of the pack seeing as, well, the field is indeed in a city.
OTHER DULL SPONSOR NAMES (24-19)
24. AT&T Park
23. Target Field
22. Progressive Field
21. Safeco Field (soon to be ’T-Mobile Field’, sigh)
20. Rogers Centre
19. Petco Park
Whilst not as suffocatingly dull as naming your ballpark after a bank, this bunch of lower league liabilities offer very little in either the humour or history departments. Progressive Field is a spectacularly ironic name for a park that hosts a team riddled with racist imagery, whilst the Rogers Centre is a disappointing substitute for the infinitely cool ‘Skydome’. The Padres take top spot in this division by virtue of naming their park after a pet store. Ballsy.
BEVERAGE NAMES PT 1: THE OJ DIVISION (18-17)
18. Tropicana Field
17. Minute Maid Park
Ali vs Frazier. Messi vs Ronaldo. Staying in bed vs getting up to piss. Human history is littered with tales of awe-inspiring head-to-head battles, and Tropicana vs Minute Maid is no exception. In fact, MLB are missing a trick by not giving the Tampa Bay-Houston rivalry the pomp and grandeur it deserves for such a titanic naming sponsor clash. Minute Maid tops the division because Tropicana Field suuuuucks.
[ENTER TEAM NAME] PARK/STADIUM (16-12)
16. Marlins Park
15. Angel Stadium
14. Yankee Stadium
13. Nationals Park
12. Dodger Stadium
I wrestled with the deserved spot for this bracket of field names, as though they are mundanely boring they do at least avoid the commercialised ignominy of selling out to a sponsor. Mid-table mediocrity seemed a fitting compromise. Marlins Park can consider themselves lucky to scrape into this bracket as I’ve no doubt that Jeffrey Loria would have sold the naming rights in a heartbeat if his cesspool of a ballpark wasn’t so offensively undesirable.
BEVERAGE NAMES PT 2: THE BEER DIVISION (11-10)
11. Miller Park
10. Coors Field
Crack open a cold one with the boys. Sink a couple of jars with the fellas. Blow the froth off a few with the lads. Beer is cool, which is why you spend the first few years of adolescence excruciatingly pretending to enjoy the diabolical taste before ambivalence (or merely the desire to feel anything at all when drinking) sets in and you find yourself no longing visibly wincing between sips. So cool. Coors comes 10th because no-one says ‘Milleeeerrr’ whenever a Brewers’ hitter’s stats are brought up.
APPARENTLY THIS IS A SPONSOR, THAT SUCKS (9)
9. Great American Ball Park
I really, genuinely, thought this was what the city of Cincinnati had decided to name their stadium and I was in love with the brash arrogance of it. Imagine a stadium in the UK called Great British Stadium. Shit, forget that, that sounds like some bizarro Mary Berry-Tommy Robinson collaboration from an alternate universe. Either way, it transpires that the name comes from Great American Insurance Group anyway, proving that the Reds really do deal expertly in disappointment.
NAMES SO BAD THEY’RE ACTUALLY KIND OF GOOD (8-7)
8. Globe Life Park in Arlington
7. Guaranteed Rate Field
I mean these names are just offensively bad, but in such a confident and uncaring way that it’s hard not to feel a modicum of affection towards them. Globe Life Park? A bold and much-needed stand against flat-earthers. Guaranteed Rate? More like Guaranteed Great. Kudos to you Rangers and White Sox.
NAMES THAT AREN’T JUST SPONSORS OR THE TEAM NAME (6-1)
6. O.Co Coliseum
5. Busch Stadium
4. Wrigley Field
3. Camden Yards
2. Fenway Park
- Kauffman Stadium
About halfway through this exercise I realised that almost all baseball stadiums have really boring names when you actually look into it. Still, we’ve come this far. The Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum can consider itself lucky to have made it the final six given the name is nearly as much of an eyesore as the ballpark itself. Busch and Wrigley are effectively named after beer and gum respectively, but get free passes as they have links to former owners. Camden Yards and Fenway Park are both just named after the areas the ballparks are located in even if they do sound cool.
Which, by process of elimination, leaves us with Kauffman Stadium. Named after former owner Ewing Kauffman, a pretty decent man who invested an awful lot into baseball in Kansas City, this seems like an appropriate winner, and having a nickname like ‘The K’ certainly doesn’t hurt.
And thus ends the rankings of all 30 MLB stadiums on basis of name alone. I hope you’re as underwhelmed as I am.