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Victory Field

Indianapolis, IN

Home of the Indianapolis Indians

3.6

4.0

Victory Field (map it)
501 W Maryland St
Indianapolis, IN 46225


Indianapolis Indians website

Victory Field website

Year Opened: 1996

Capacity: 15,500

There are no tickets available at this time.

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Cool Boys and Indians

If there was ever a coolness factor given to a minor league ballpark, then Victory Field in Indianapolis would be the Fonze. It does not scream minor league baseball as much as its counterparts across the league, but is where the populace congregates during the hot summer months in downtown Indianapolis. Victory Field becomes a meeting place for all sorts who welcome the warm weather, sunny days and a strong sense of friendship. The home of the Indians since 1996 is a ballpark that has something to offer every type of individual who buys a ticket and sets forth through the gates.

3.6

What is FANFARE?

The FANFARE scale is our metric device for rating each stadium experience. It covers the following:

  • Food & Beverage
  • Atmosphere
  • Neighborhood
  • Fans
  • Access
  • Return on Investment
  • Extras

Each area is rated from 0 to 5 stars with 5 being the best. The overall composite score is the "FANFARE Score".

Food & Beverage    4

The food at Victory Field has come a long way since its origins as they now produce some great tasting cuisine at decent prices. There is not one food item here that goes overboard like in many other stadiums, but there is an ample variety of hot dogs that range in price from the Victory Dog ($3.50) to a specialty foot long ($8), including the "diablo" and "chicken pot pie dog." There is also an area to build your own hot dog, fries, nachos, burgers, and chicken sandwiches with prices between $5.50-$6.50, including 24 different toppings.

You will also find local pizza establishment Arni's for $4 a slice, Italian sausages, brats, rib sandwiches, chicken tender baskets, nachos and veggie burgers.

In the beverage category, Sun King is the local official beer of the Indians and you will find Coors and Budweiser products throughout the rest of the stadium. A beer will cost between $5.75-$6.25.

If you attend a game on a Monday night, there are $1 hot dogs, sodas, popcorn, and peanuts at specific concession stands. The food at Victory Field does not try hard to reinvent itself, but rather, make the usual ballpark food a little bit tastier and appealing.

Atmosphere    4

When you have a ballpark situated in downtown the views are spectacular and they are just as beautiful inside throughout the concourses. There is two tier seating and long, lush grass berm seating that is perfect for lying out on a blanket or enjoying a few snacks from your cooler. The berm is my favorite gathering spot, since both your baseball and non-baseball fan can enjoy the game in unison; it is also a great place to get a tan. A lot of other ballparks have grass seating in the outfield, but here it is spacious and the perfect slope for comfort - my pick for the best seats in the house.

Then again, you might want to hang out in the Captain Morgan Cove in the left field corner. A ticket will cost you $35, but you will have open seating and receive $10 toward food or beverage. The immensely popular section can handle up to 150 people per game and is usually sold out from June to September. It is a place for the adults to enjoy the game away from the children.

The team's official merchandise store is rather small, but there is a lot of great merchandise for both men and women and it pays tribute to the team's history. It can get somewhat cramped on busy game nights.

The main concourse has heritage posters that pay homage to former great players that include Harmon Killebrew, Roger Maris, Randy Johnson, George Foster, Dave Concepcion, and current Pirate Andrew McCutchen. There are more former players adorning each seating section, but I would have liked to have seen even more on display. The Indians have such a rich history of championships, great uniforms, and logos that are dripping with baseball nostalgia.

Neighborhood    4

Victory Field is located in downtown Indianapolis and it is one of the cleanest and safest cities to walk around in the nation. In fact, it would put some Canadian cities to shame. There are many options from hotels, bars, restaurants, and museums from which to choose. Albeit that many of them are chains, but there a few places I would recommend if you are downtown with a few guy friends where you can vent about your wife or girlfriend or have those conversations that you would not normally have with your wife or girlfriend, if you know what I mean.

Ralph's Great Divide is a small, local hole in the wall a few blocks north on 743 E. New York St. that offers a delicious bourbon baked ham and other dishes. Another dive, with 1950s décor is The Working Man's Friend at 234 N Belmont Street, a mere two miles west of Victory Field and is the place to have a really great burger or chili that makes you feel like a man. Tomlinson Tap Room at 222 E. Market St. is located on the upper level of the City Market and is the place for a craft beer.

If you are with the family, the Indianapolis Zoo and State Museum are within walking distance of the stadium and for a place the kids will really love, The Children's Museum is just a few short miles north.

Of course, Mass Ave. and Fountain Square are my can't miss spots. If you do find yourself in downtown, please stay away from Howl at the Moon piano bar. I do not understand why people will wait in line to pay copious amounts of money to hear someone play Piano Man, Crocodile Rock, or an old Snoop Doggy Dog song. If you need a place to hang out, listen to music or just do some people watching, then visit the Tin Roof Inn, or Coaches Tavern.

Fans    3

I have been attending games here for over a decade and I am not sure what to say about Indians fans. Are they here to watch baseball, or are they here for a nice night out with friends or family? I have been to other towns where you know after an inning or two what type of fans are in the stands, but here it is all about being outside, having a lazy afternoon, or enjoying a night with a group of friends or colleagues. This is not a horrible concept, since it can be hard to keep up with the roster of players coming and going from the team. Then again that is minor league baseball and it is all about getting fans to buy tickets to the ballpark and believe me, the fans come out for weekend games by the throngs during the summertime. I may be a little bit hard on the fans here, since it took them 20-years to finally support the Colts, but fans do fill up the place on a consistent basis year after year and never have a negative thing to say about Victory Field.

Access    3

Victory Field is a downtown venue, but it is close enough off I-70 that it should not be too much of a hassle to find. There is a public parking lot at the Indiana State Museum that many patrons use or multiple garage parking lots that will range between $3-$5. If you are lucky and attend a game on a Sunday afternoon, meter parking is free of charge, but may require a little bit of a walk. Warning, it does get somewhat congested around the outfield entrance to the stadium, but local police do a great job of making congestion dissipate on the streets and sidewalks. The best way off I-70 is to exit 79A S. West St and proceed north until the stadium is on your left.

Return on Investment    3

Tickets for an Indians game will cost you between $10-$15 depending on where you want to sit. This is around the average with other teams in the International League. I would say it is a fair investment, but what happened to the $7 lawn seats from years back? The team does have its Dollar Mondays and Two for Tuesday specials. Then again, $10 for a ticket is comparable to a movie ticket, a couple of drinks and tip at a bar or dinner at a restaurant. You are at a beautiful ballpark with friends and that may not have a price tag.

Extras    4

The Indians have turned a profit every year since 1975, not too bad for a minor league baseball team. The organization has also added a few nice touches with an LED scoreboard, Coors Light Corner, Captain Morgan Cove, and a victory bell that gets rung after every home victory. All of these areas have helped with the ambiance at the ballpark. I am assuming we will see a few more changes in the upcoming seasons and those changes should be in line for the 21st century minor league baseball customer.

Final Thoughts

Victory Field was once hailed by Baseball America as the greatest ballpark in the country and it still has all of the charm of a great AAA ballpark as it did when it first opened its doors in 1996. It is clean, spacious, comfortable and affordable to all patrons who take in a game. The Indians' organization does things a little simpler, but their efforts have paid off immensely.

Sitting right behind bullpens

One feature I really liked about this field (I visited there in the mid/late 90's so things may have changed) was being able to sit on the third base side, first row, in front of the bullpen. It was fantastic being right there watching the pitchers warm up.

by megminard | Dec 16, 2010 04:26 PM

RE: Sitting right behind bullpens

It's a great baseball park in a great sports city, and I was lucky enough to get a doubleheader since the day before got rained out. Looking forward to a return visit in 2011!

by paul | Dec 16, 2010 05:39 PM

Player to be named later

Watched the documentary "a player to be named later" last night, which follows the Indians for a season back in 2002 if i remember correctly. Its very interesting to see as you get a glimpse of the not so glamorous life as a minor leaguer as well as a glimpse of the Indians. Get a good glimpse of Marco Scutaro before he made it to the bigs also.

by pderrick | Jun 28, 2011 03:13 PM

Victory in Indy!

I love this ballpark, and it's definetly in my top five minor league parks. The best seats, imo, is in the front row of the second deck. Great view of all the action, yet the game still feels close. The parking is tough, so expect to pay for a parking garage and walk. Lots to do downtown, though, so easy to make a day of it. We also went to the Speedway, and saw the museum there as well as taking a lap or two in the bus. Great experience for all of us.
http://burrilltalksbaseball.mlblogs.com/2009/07/08/2009-baseball-trip/

by Michael David | Nov 08, 2012 01:56 AM

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Crowd Reviews

Victory for Everyone

Total Score: 3.86

  • Food & Beverage: 4
  • Atmosphere 4
  • Neighborhood: 5
  • Fans: 3
  • Access: 4
  • RoI: 4
  • Extras: 3

Indianapolis has quickly become one of the best sports cities in America. One could argue that this ascension began with the completion of Victory Field in 1996. Combined with Conseco Fieldhouse and Lucas Oil Stadium, two of the best stadiums in their respective sports, the downtown is a thriving sports-centric extravaganza.

Basketball always comes to mind first when thinking of sports in Indiana, but this town has a long history of professional baseball. Since 1887, there have been baseball teams in Indianapolis, including a stint as part of the National League for four years. Since 1902, the team has been known as the Indians, even though they have been affiliated with the White Sox, Phillies, Expos, Reds, Brewers, and currently the Pirates.

As a result of their many affiliations, stars from several MLB franchises have played in Indy. The list includes Harmon Killebrew, Roger Maris, Dave Concepcion, Randy Johnson, and Paul Konerko. The wide concourses are filled with banners honoring this history.

Victory for Indy!

Total Score: 3.57

  • Food & Beverage: 4
  • Atmosphere 4
  • Neighborhood: 3
  • Fans: 3
  • Access: 2
  • RoI: 5
  • Extras: 4

I love this ballpark. It's definately in my top five minor league parks. Lot's to do in town, but the parking sucks. Good food, fun time.

Best AAA stadium in the USA

Total Score: 4.57

  • Food & Beverage: 4
  • Atmosphere 5
  • Neighborhood: 5
  • Fans: 3
  • Access: 5
  • RoI: 5
  • Extras: 5

Victory field is amazing because you have the Indy skyline in the background which is awesome.You can play games the fans are ok and nothing is to expensive

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Local Food & Drink

Loughmiller's Pub & Eatery  (map it!)

301 W Washington St

Indianapolis, IN 46204

(317) 638-7380

http://www.loughmillerspub.com/

Ralph's Great Divide  (map it!)

743 East New York Street

Indianapolis, IN 46202

(317) 637-2192

http://www.ralphsgreatdivide.com/

Tomlinson Tap Room  (map it!)

222 East Market Street

Indianapolis, IN 46204

(317) 423-2337

http://www.indycm.com/tomlinsontaproom/

Local Entertainment

Indiana Repertory Theatre  (map it!)

140 W Washington St

Indianapolis, IN 46204

(317) 635-5252

http://www.irtlive.com/

Indianapolis Zoo   (map it!)

1200 W Washington St

Indianapolis, IN 46222

(317) 630-2001

http://www.indyzoo.com/SitePages/home.aspx

Children's Museum of Indianapolis  (map it!)

3000 N Meridian St

Indianapolis, IN 46208

(317) 334-4000

http://www.childrensmuseum.org/

Lodging

Hyatt Regency Indianapolis  (map it!)

One South Capitol Avenue

Indianapolis, IN 46204

(317) 632-1234

http://indianapolis.hyatt.com/hyatt/hotels/index.jsp

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