Credit to the Angels organization for making the best of its ballpark situation. Angel Stadium was built for baseball in the 1960s, renovated to host football for the Rams beginning in the 80s, and then extensively renovated back to a baseball-only facility in the 90s. The result is that the park looks much younger than its age.
Approaching Angel Stadium from the west and crossing the parking lots, it still looks like a football stadium. The home plate entrance, however, is really well done – that corner gives off a baseball vibe with large pictures of current players, the Angel Stadium marquis in red lights, and two enormous Angel hats. The hats were much more impressive in person than I imagined based on the pictures I viewed in advance. A final highlight of the park’s exterior is the big A with the halo that used to support a scoreboard but is now located out in the parking lot to the east of the home plate entrance.
Inside the park seems expansive, especially from the outfield concourse. The most noticeable feature is the rock/geyser/waterfall located beyond the left-center field wall. Unfortunately this feature seemed more fake in person than on television. It isn’t helped by the green turf used as the batter’s eye. I wouldn’t classify this area of the park as terrible, but it just doesn’t seem to add that much either and feels a bit too contrived (compared to the stream/trees/rocks at Coors Field).
In the end Angel stadium isn’t likely to be near the top of most fan’s favorite ballpark lists, but it’s still a fine place to take in a game. The atmosphere is relaxed, the seats are comfortable with good sight lines, and they’ve done a nice job of converting a multipurpose facility into a true ballpark.
A Tip of the Cap
- The welcoming home plate entrance with team colors and over-sized Angel hats
- Friendly staff throughout the park
- The team display (including its World Series trophy) visible to all in the lower concourse
- Preservation of the “big A” statue/sign in the parking lot
Swing and a Miss
Trip to the Mound
The second level (loge) offers a good vantage point and you get wait staff who take your order and bring your food right to you, all for a reasonable price. No more missing key at bats due to hunger! Arrive early to walk around and see different parts of the park.
Overall Rating: B+
- Setting (B): The area around the park seems friendly and rather commercial. You can walk across the parking lot to get to a few restaurants and shopping. There are some views of the surrounding hills but nothing stunning.
- External Appearance (B+): Much of the exterior looks like a football stadium (which it once was); the home plate entrance is really well done – beautiful and inviting.
- Internal Appearance (B): It took a lot of work to transform this facility back into a baseball-only environment, and the Angels have done it pretty well. There are some major pluses – the display of the World Series trophy and other items from the Angels’ history in the concourse, the colors used throughout the park, etc. There are also some minuses – the rocks and water feature just aren’t realistic enough and the video boards don’t match up favorably with some of the newer displays found throughout MLB.
- Atmosphere (A): A good sized crowd was laid back and enjoying themselves. Stadium staff were friendly and helpful throughout. The ushers were there to help and didn’t bother anyone unless there was a real issue.