MLB Parks Tour #8 – Wrigley Field, Chicago, IL – 2009

Working through these as quickly as I can preparing for the trip in June!

Chicago is an undeniably unique and wonderful city. From Sears Tower to Lincoln Park to El-Trains to that big, shiny, reflective bean thing in Millennium Park, Chicago is bursting at the seams with culture. And no Chicago culture tour would be complete without visiting one of America’s most iconic ballparks…Wrigley Field. You simply cannot look out from the seats of the “friendly confines”, see the ivy walls, the old scoreboard, and the unofficial rooftop seats, without feeling transported to the glory days of classic hardball. Wrigley was stop #2 in our 4-stop summer road-trip through Kansas City, Chicago, and St. Louis. In short, Chicago did not disappoint.

Wrigley Field was originally named Weeghman Park when it was built in 1914 to host the Chicago Whales. In 1916 the Cubs began use of the park, when chewing-gum billionaire William Wrigley, Jr bought the park in a trust with Weeghman. The field went by Cubs Park from 1920-1926, until it was finally dubbed Wrigley Field. It’s the oldest National League park in Major League Baseball, and the second oldest park in all of the MLB to Fenway (1912). The iconic Ivy was planted in the outfield in 1937, and has served as one of the most recognizable stadium features in baseball ever since. I could go on and on.

We had a great time at Wrigley, and sat in some of the oldest seats in baseball. Can’t beat that.

A few notes:

The weather was chilly in the sun…and as an added bonus we weren’t in the sun. We shivered in the Windy City (and oh was it ever windy) shade, but still loved every minute.

In the late Spring of 2009, Conan O’Brien was taking over The Tonight Show from Jay Leno. I won’t go into all of the details here about the weird story all of that turned out to be, but we did get to experience a little bit of history on our day in Chicago related to Conan. He did a cold opening montage that featured him running across America to move into his new Studio in L.A. from New York. Part of his run ran through Wrigley, and we were there to witness the filming. Here’s the cold opening…(Chicago is at about the 2 minute mark)

I also found this video from the stands that day. Really cool moment.

Another cool note, and something I actually didn’t know before researching this article, is that Wrigley was also home to the Chicago Bears from 1921 to 1970.

The game:

Houston Astros – 6
Chicago Cubs – 5

Sunday, May 17, 2009, 2:20PM
Time of Game: 3:00
Weather: 50° F, Windy and Sunny.

Attendance: 40,478 (Plus some people in rooftop seats.)

Winning Pitcher: Brian Moehler (1-2)
Losing Pitcher: Rich Harden (4-2)
Save: Chris Sampson (1)

The hot dog:

(Hot Dog ratings are for entertainment purposes only. Any resemblance to hot dogs, either real or fictional, is purely coincidental.)

Was there really any question what this hotdog would score? Let me put it to you like this. I typically like my hotdogs plain with some ketchup or mustard. I also don’t love onions. On this day, you couldn’t have stopped me from getting those grilled onions on that dog. One of the best dogs ever. Period.

Score (out of 5): 5 Dogs

5-hotdogs

Now for photos!

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Cheers, and play ball!