MLB Parks Tour #9 – U.S. Cellular Field, Chicago, IL – 2009
Working through these as quickly as I can preparing for the trip in June!
As I said in the previous installment on Wrigley Field, Yvette and I really loved Chicago. I think we were surprised to like it as much as we did actually. We have always been huge fans of Boston and of New York City as well, but Chicago always had that tertiary “oh yeah” quality to it. That faded very quickly as we spent time there. The trip from our hotel in the Northwest O’Hare Rosemont area to the more southern “Comiskey Park II” was an interesting one. We decided we wanted to visit the University of Chicago as well, and that train ride took us on a very unique journey through the different cultures and communities of Chicago. That train ride alone is a blog post all it’s own.
U.S. Cellular Field was built in 1991 season, after 81 years in the original home of the White Sox, Comiskey Park. It was initially named Comiskey Park II, until 2003 when U.S. Cellular bought the naming rights. It’s gone through many iterations and renovations over the years, some due to fan complaints, namely the very steep upper deck (which we sat in) that was the subject of many fan’s scorn. On the other side of the coin, perhaps one of the most recognizable features of “The Cell” are the pinwheels on the centerfield scoreboard, a holdover from Bill Veeck’s original installation at the original Comiskey Park. They make up part of the “exploding scoreboard” that was one of the first to feature a combination of fireworks and lights when the Sox would score home runs.