Sunday, March 30, 2008

Reflections of Memphis

I'm back from a short sojourn to Memphis for the Civil Rights Game between the Chicago White Sox and the New York Mets.

Let me start by saying Auto Zone Park is a true jewel. It's the third "new" Triple-A park I've been to. The others are Zephyr Field in New Orleans and the Dell Diamond in Round Rock.

Auto Zone Park is at the top of that list, and not just because of the recent visit.

It's location probably makes it that way. It's situated in downtown Memphis. There are apartments overlooking center field and right field where residents can take in a game from their porch -- similar to the Wrigley Field experience.

The architecture is a mix of modern and throwback styles. I could go on, but onto the game.

It was a spring training game, but many regulars played most of the game. The Mets won 3-2, but the umpiring was in midseason form.

After new Mets right fielder Ryan Church tipped a ball off his glove and clearly off the top of the wall and a fan, it was ruled in play. That loaded the bases for Chicago, which, instead of having a three-run home run, settled for a two-run single and lost the game.

All in all, it was quite an experience. I'd love to head back to Memphis sometime this summer when it's not cold, rainy and depressing and really see the city's jewel of a stadium shine.


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