Dodger Stadium - Los Angeles Dodgers
Photos by Andrei Ojeda, Stadium Journey
Stadium Info FANFARE Score: 4.29
Dodger Stadium 1000 Vin Scully Ave Los Angeles, CA 90012
Year Opened: 1962 Capacity: 56,000
Blue Heaven on Earth
Upon their arrival in 1958 from Brooklyn the Dodgers would play their home games at the L.A. Coliseum until 1961. Native Angelinos were quick to embrace the Brooklyn transplants as over 78,000 attended the Dodgers first-ever home game at the Coliseum.
But not all of Los Angeles would embrace the former Flatbush Bums arrival particularly when it came to the controversy leading to the construction of Dodger Stadium. When the dust finally settled, Dodger Stadium would officially open on April 10, 1962. The Dodgers would draw over 2.75 million fans in their gleaming new home. Year in and year out Dodger Stadium features the highest attendance figures in all of baseball with daily crowds of over 40,000 being the norm.
Over the years Dodger Stadium has had many memorable moments, from Chris Taylor’s Wild Card Clinching walk-off home run to Gibson’s epic at-bat against Dennis Eckersley in 1988 to their sweep of the Yankees in the 1963 World Series, the only time the Dodgers would clinch a World Series at home.
For all its glorious history, Dodger Stadium has been the host of 25 postseasons, 10 World Series, as well as hosting The Pope, Elton John, Michael Jackson, and The Beatles.
Dodger Stadium is the third oldest yard behind only Fenway Park and Wrigley Field. Despite being the third oldest big league park, Dodger Stadium, affectionately referred to by blue-clad locals as Blue Heaven On Earth, is hardly referred to as a classic. Dodger Stadium maintains a truly unique identity as marked by its signature pastel-colored seating pallet.
Food & Beverage 4
Though Farmer John is no longer the hot dog provider after being synonymous with Dodger Baseball for so many years, the famous Dodger Dog remains on the menu now provided by Papa Cantella. Kosher hot dogs and sausages are also available through their stand located in the right field section of the outfield plaza.
Some of the most noticeable additions to the dining options can be found in the outfield plaza including Shake Shack. Some of my favorite dining options are on the left-field side of the outfield plaza. The Smoked Brisket Sandwich and Burnt End Nachos are available at the Think Blue Barbecue stand. The brisket in each item is smoked overnight with the sandwich topped off with coleslaw, providing fans with one of the tastiest items in the yard.
If you happen to bring a big appetite with you Think Blue Barbecue also has an MVP Platter with burnt ends, pulled pork, hot links, coleslaw, potato salad, and jalapeno cornbread. Not only is this one of the tastier items throughout the park, but it's also big enough to feed 2 to 3 heavy hitters.
Next to the Think Blue Barbecue stand is the Dueling Dogs featuring a bacon-wrapped dog and a visiting team-themed dog. Dining areas were recently added to the outfield plaza. Fans dining in the plaza can watch the game on the new outfield plaza screens with scoreboards providing live stats.
Coca-Cola products are the soft drinks of choice. Domestic and imported beers such as Budweiser and Modelo are available throughout the stadium. Two new indoor bars located beneath both the left and right field pavilions are available for fans before and during the games. The bars feature a vast variety of alcoholic drinks and provide screens of the live game action and other sporting events. A viewing area near the bullpen mounds is also located inside each bar for fans to watch pitchers warm up.
Dodger Stadium Sandy Koufax, Photo by Andrei Ojeda, Stadium Journey
It all starts as you enter through the new grand entrance to the newly enhanced outfield plaza. As you enter the plaza you are greeted by two legendary statues, Jackie Robinson and the recently added Sandy Koufax.
As you walk through the plaza you will want to take some time and approach the area below both the left and right field pavilions. Memorabilia of the 2020 championship team and old stadium seats are on display. If this is your first time taking in a game at Dodger Stadium before 2021, you will notice the vast additions commemorating their glorious history. Other viewing and meeting points popular among the fans are a vintage ice cream truck and a blue-decked fire truck paying homage to Dodger Stadium’s 1962 opening.
When not fully paying attention to the action on the field, some of the best views of the city, be it the San Gabriel Mountains beyond the outfield or the downtown skyline can be seen from the top deck and reserve levels.
Several nice walking trails along with pregame picnic areas on the grounds of Elysian Park are outside Dodger Stadium and provide some of the natural scenery beyond Dodger Stadium.
Aside from Elysian Park’s picnic areas and the scenery, it provides the yard, the surrounding area does not offer much pre- or post-game entertainment or dining options. However, The Shortstop, a local dive bar not far from the stadium, is a favorite among Dodger fans. Chinatown and Downtown L.A. are also a short drive from the yard and offer several pre- and post-game dining options.
As the Dodgers approach another postseason run, crowds of more than 40,000 are a regular occurrence. The home nine’s current run of 10 consecutive post-season appearances has done nothing to dull the enthusiasm of the Dodger Blue Faithful.
Dodger Blue runs deep throughout many Angeleno’s hearts and throughout Southern California as they are a loud and passionate bunch.
The Dodgers, like their purple and gold counterparts at the Crypto.com Arena, can attract many a Hollywood crowd. Dodger blue and white are the colors you see decked among the fans who proudly show their passion. Though some are there stargaze or “to be seen” as can be the case with any L.A. sporting event, Dodgers fans cheer loudly for their hometown team and often in large numbers.
The recent enhancements to Dodger Stadium have significantly improved access throughout Dodger Stadium. Unlike years past, fans can enter through any entrance and are also free to roam throughout each level of the stadium.
Additional elevators located on the left and right field corners of each concourse have been added, as well as additional escalators and stairs in the expanded exterior concourse.
A new pedestrian walkway has been added atop the pavilions as well as additional ADA viewing areas and a social area overlooking the outfield plaza. Additional restrooms have also been added to each of the two pavilions.
If you should choose to drive to the game, five entrances lead to the vast parking lot, which can accommodate up to 16,000 vehicles. Unless you plan on entering through the outfield plaza it’s still a good idea to research your seating location so you have a good idea where you should park. You will also want to purchase parking ahead of time on your mobile app to help reduce entry time. Otherwise, prepare to pay with your debit/credit card only.
Various roads lead to Dodger Stadium which can be accessed by the 5, 110, or 101. Because of its proximity to downtown Los Angeles and the fact that most of the natives rely on their vehicles to get around this sprawling city, you will want to allow yourself more than ample time to drive to the stadium if you want to be at your seat by the first pitch. There’s a reason why Dodgers fans have a reputation, albeit an unfair one, as late arrivers.
Another transportation option is the Dodger Stadium shuttle, which runs from Union Station downtown every 15 minutes beginning 90 minutes to 2 hours before game time. Union Station can also easily be reached by light rail via the MTA through the Red, Purple, and Gold lines.
Return on Investment 4
Tickets for most games can be bought through 3rd party sites below face value. Though you can expect prices to be among the highest in the bigs with the significant enhancements along with another playoff-contending team, the price you pay to experience a game or two at one of the more historic ballparks along with a passionate fanbase will be worth the price. If you are fortunate the box office prices will start at $25.
In past years Dodger Stadium did not offer much regarding displaying their storied history. That recently changed with the outfield plaza enhancements most notably in both pavilion areas. Fans can view memorabilia and displays paying tribute to Dodgers legends and sit in old stadium seats. Gold Glove Awards can also be viewed below the left field pavilion.
Fans entering through the outfield plaza are greeted by the statues of Jackie Robinson and Sandy Koufax.
Fans entering through the Top Deck entrance will walk through the Retired Numbers Plaza featuring statues of the iconic red numbers from the Dodgers uniforms of each Dodger who had the honor of having their number retired including recently retired number 34, belonging to the former legendary pitcher and longtime fan favorite Fernando Valenzuela.
Along with two baseball-themed playgrounds on the reserve level, another playground has been added behind the center field wall with protective netting above to protect kids from home run balls. Life-sized bobbleheads and other exhibits are spread throughout the stadium, including one of the legendary former manager Tommy Lasorda, located in the outfield plaza.
The recent enhancements throughout the third oldest yard in the Majors have made the Dodger Stadium experience much more accessible for fans wanting to experience as much of the historic venue and have assured us that Dodger Stadium will be the home to Dodger Baseball for many more years to come.
Only 13 games have been postponed in its 61-year history so it’s all but a sure thing the game you attend will not be called due to rain.
With its unique seating pallet mimicking its original 1962 look, when you step inside Dodger Stadium, you’ll no doubt tell yourself colors, meant to evoke the sun, sand, ocean, and sky, really do give the 60-year-old gem a look, and experience, that’s like no other in baseball.