Sports Illustrated has ranked the Major League ballparks by what they call the Fan Value Index, which takes several different factors into account. Great American Ballpark is ranked 8th.

Blame Chad for creating this mess.

Chad launched Redleg Nation in February 2005, and has been writing about the Reds ever since. His first book, “The Big 50: The Men and Moments That Made the Cincinnati Reds” is now available in bookstores and online, at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and wherever fine books are sold. You can also find Chad’s musings about the Cincinnati Reds in the pages of Cincinnati Magazine.

You can email Chad at chaddotson@redlegnation.com.

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  1. I looked at the survey this morning. It’s fairly inconsistent, probably because several different guys wrote it. Some parks, like Petco, are dinged for having “distractions” like contests and giveaways, while other parks (Miller) are praised lavishly for the same nonsense. A fairly useless exercise — but Americans do love their lists.

    To that end, my favorite parks:
    1. Fenway – the cathedral of baseball
    2. PNC – perfect park, terrible team
    3. Wrigley – pure fun, plus imagining things past
    4. Coors – on a bigger scale than other parks, but somehow better
    5. Pac Bell – only toured it, but amazing
    6 Camden Yards – what (re)started it all
    7. Petco – very San Diego, novel
    8. GABP – incorporates history, seems better for a once-a-year trip than daily use
    9. The Big A – amazing what they did with a re-model; Riverfront could’ve been
    10. Jacobs – feels like Disney’s version of a new ballpark
    999. Shea – total dung heap

    Former Parks:
    1. Comiskey – museum piece
    2. Riverfront – memories
    3. Qualcomm – better before the expansion
    4. Mile High – interesting, if flawed
    5. Olympic – so bad it was good
    6. Three Rivers – pointless

  2. I don’t understand all the praise Jacobs Field has elicited. I’ve been there maybe a dozen times, sat all over the place, and have never been very impressed. I think one big difference between Jacobs and GABP is the nosebleed seats. There isn’t a bad seat in GABP, but if you’re up high at Jacobs you’re screwed. It seems like there’s either a bar or an usher in your way at all times.

  3. Jacobs is a great experience. It was the first place I visited (circa 1995)that had servers walking the aisles taking drink orders, and bringing the portable electronic credit/check card swiper to your seat with your drink. It made the commoner able to afford some of the creature comforts that were usually reserved for suites.

    The view of downtown is outstanding just past centerfield, which was copied by many stadia afterwards.Jacobs revitalized an entire section of downtown Cleveland. It is much more fun to hang out before, and after, the game in the Gateway district than anyway near GABP.

    Plus, there is a great little “beers of the world” kiosk on the 1st base concourse, just past the sushi bar-where it is imperative to quaff at least one Ichiban.

    In addition, Jacobs has the best mustard in the world.

    The seats in the upper deck are horrid, as the two levels of private boxes really distance the upper deck from the playing field.

  4. So i guess the point is: if you have lots of time and money Jacobs Field is great. If you can’t afford field level seats, however, don’t bother coming.

    The area around Jacobs is fun as well. But you can take a scenic walk over the Ohio to Newport and there’s no lack of fun to be had on that side of the river.

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About Chad Dotson

Blame Chad for creating this mess. Chad launched Redleg Nation in February 2005, and has been writing about the Reds ever since. His first book, "The Big 50: The Men and Moments That Made the Cincinnati Reds" is now available in bookstores and online, at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and wherever fine books are sold. You can also find Chad's musings about the Cincinnati Reds in the pages of Cincinnati Magazine. You can email Chad at chaddotson@redlegnation.com.

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Reds - General