Friday, September 18, 2009

Slap Hitter: Everyone hates Oakland

Fri, Sep 18, 2009 at 6:59 PM

Sports Illustrated published a survey this week about which ballpark brings the least pleasure to the visiting team. We won! Or lost! The Coliseum was picked as America's unfavorite by a plurality of voters. The only other field in the ballpark (rimshot) is Florida's Land Shark Stadium, which is scheduled to be abandoned in three years. And yet, this week there was a piece of awesome news coming from the big concrete domicile we call home. A's season tickets are being priced to go....often!

When I was a little Sacrifice Bunt, I thought owning season tickets was the pinnacle, a sign of a life well lived. Being able to go to the yard, even the worst park in the major leagues every night, wow! The Athletics have actually priced their bleacher seats for the masses. $9 a game is twice as cheap as parking at the game. But the fan who picks up that option is also crossing over the BART bridge every night as well.

As a grown up, I cogitate now on a different set of question: Who are the folk who buy season tickets? Do they buy two? I am not sure I could find somebody willing to tag along for the mid-April game against Baltimore for even one game. Do they give away or sell off tickets to dozens of games? And how do I get the kind of life that allows me to be away from home for four and a half hours every weeknight, and the middle of the day every weekend? And is it too late to get that kind of life? Or do I want it?

What I do know is that the A's continue to get slagged for playing in a soul-less dump; which even as people point it out and vote for it as such, I've never much minded. The bases look reasonably clean, the football gridiron stripes add a level of levity to any conversation, and the addition of text-cam on the scoreboard beats the hell out of dot racing.

Even if the big leaguers would rather be anywhere else, I find myself quite at home. And for the low price of less than a sawbuck a game, we can get a seat and jeer those haters, and make them wish they went back to wherever they came from.— Kibby Kleiman

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