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When I was little, my friends and I loved taking the bus to see the Los Angeles Dodgers. And even though we weren’t big baseball fans, we were enchanted by the experience of sitting in a giant stadium, surrounded by huge lights, perfectly cut grass and thousands of fans. We also loved eating Dodger dogs and peanuts and screaming at opposing teams.
Today I still feel the same way. I don’t follow the game closely, but I thoroughly enjoy the experience of sitting outside with a cold beer, sharing a spring or summer night with thousands of enthusiastic fans and cheering on a national pastime.
Such was the case recently when a friend and I went to Dodger Stadium for a matchup between the Dodgers and first place San Francisco Giants.
Because we had Dugout Club seats, we began the evening with dinner at the exclusive club restaurant, located on the ground level of the stadium. Here we found a hip buffet and full bar area full of serious baseball fans and a few celebrities. Since all the gourmet food is free with purchase of a Dugout Club ticket, we grabbed plates and enjoyed roast beef, carnitas, shrimp, various salads and of course Dodger dogs.
While eating we bought a couple beers and listened to Vin Scully prepare the game on TV.
And just when we thought it couldn’t get any better, we walked out the room to our seats.
Named by USA Today in 2008 as the best seat in the National League, the best premium seat in Major League Baseball, and third-best overall seat in MLB, The Dugout Club is must-sit-and-see experience for any baseball fan. As a casual fan I was very impressed by the seat’s views and proximity to the field, as well as by the chef-prepared gourmet food served inside the club.
Our fourth-row seats, located about 10 feet from the on-deck circle, we were actually closer to the catcher than the pitcher standing on the mound. The seats were so good, a friend said he saw me on television when a foul ball flew behind the catcher.
The only two seats in baseball that were rated higher than the Dugout Club are at Boston’s Fenway Park, and Rogers Centre in Toronto.
As for the game itself, the Dodgers won 10 – 8, thanks to a grand slam by Andre Ethier. Besides this, the game was highlighted by a tribute to Jackie Robinson on the 63rd anniversary of his first game in the big leagues with the Brooklyn Dodgers. Both teams wore old-styled uniforms with No. 42 (Robinson’s number) on the back.
After the game, we headed back inside The Dugout Club for the popular one-hour post-game martini party. The celebration is not only fun; it is also a great way to let parking ease up.
Ticket prices range from $12 for top deck seats to about $285 for VIP. Parking is $15. For more info on seeing a game, ticket prices and The Dugout Club, visit: www.dodgers.com.