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Stadium Review: Dr. Pepper Ballpark

Frisco, Texas is the headquarters of Dr. Pepper, so it is no surprise the hometown minor league baseball team has a park named after the carbonated beverage.

Dr. Pepper Ballpark is home to the AA affiliate of the Texas Rangers, the Frisco RoughRiders. The ballpark is state of the art and one of the more picturesque and unique stadiums on that level of the minor leagues.

Dr. Pepper Ballpark is home to the Frisco RoughRiders.

Dr. Pepper Ballpark is home to the Frisco RoughRiders.

Too hot in the Texas sun to go to a baseball game? Well, you wouldn’t have to worry about it if you were close to the RoughRiders. The pool does have a maximum of 25 people at one time, but it would be a nice refresher during a hot Texas summer day or night. The pool is situated in right-center field with the potential for a home-run ball splashing in your face just as if you were at the Arizona Diamondbacks’ stadium. Of course, with the size of a minor league ballpark, it is much more likely that you could end up in the pool in Frisco than the one in Arizona.

In the outfield next to the pool, there is a large area of green space for lawn seating. This area is actually right under the main scoreboard and would be a great place to watch a game, especially after going for a dip in the pool. There are concessions located in the area of the lawn seats, unlike many ballparks, so that even the fans in the cheapest seats don’t have to walk far for a refreshment.

Walking up to the ballpark, fans are greeted with a large bronze statue of a pitcher at the main gate. The pitcher is not an artist’s rendering of an actual ballplayer. The statue is simply called “The Pitch” and could easily remind fans of the statues that are present at stadiums around the majors like those at Busch Stadium, home of the St. Louis Cardinals.

The ballpark was once known as the Dr. Pepper/7 Up Ballpark, but has since been downsized to one beverage. The park is right next to an IKEA, so there is an abundance of parking. It is also situated in an up-and-coming, high-end realty area where fans will be able to get a bite to eat before or after the game at some very nice sports bars. There is also a very nice Embassy Suites hotel within walking distance so out-of-town fans can have a very convenient evening.

The park is fairly new, being built in 2003, the year which it was awarded the Best Architectural Design Award from the Texas Construction Administration. Also that year, Baseballparks.com named it the best new ballpark in the country. This included all major and minor league ballparks.

The idea for the ballpark was to attempt to create a park inside of the park. The inside of the facility is meant to have a park-like atmosphere as if fans were strolling through their local state park instead of taking in a baseball game. There is a lot of greenery around the stadium, including trees and bushes growing along the concourse in addition to various areas of grass. The building sections that house the press box, team offices, rest rooms and other things are built to look like pavilions.

One drawback to the park is that it has some of the highest ticket prices for a minor league game this reviewer has ever seen. The lowest available price for standing room only or a lawn spot is $7, with tickets on fold-down chairs priced at either $15 or $18. The economy in that area of Texas is one of the best in the country, but considering that there is a Major League team so close to Frisco (the Texas Rangers), the prices seem to be an added deterrent. That being said, the team has drawn well every year it has been in Frisco with very similar ticket prices.

If you are just dropping by, the prices are not too much to ask for the experience provided.

Minor League Stadium Rating: 4.25/5

Overall Stadium Rating: 4/5

 

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