The crack of the bat and the roar of the crowd means that baseball season has finally arrived.
As millions of MLB fans across the country gear up for another season of baseball, we took a deep dive into the factors that make a ballpark rise to the level of greatness.
Factors within the analysis include: accessibility (parking and public transportation options), affordability (average ticket cost as well as food, beverage and parking costs), environment (number of bars and restaurants within walking distance, average attendance) as well as fan feedback (Google and Yelp reviews).
Best MLB Ballparks
After analyzing the data, each ballpark was ranked on a 100-point scale in order to determine America’s best ballparks.
America’s Best MLB Ballparks: 2023
#1. San Diego Padres: Petco Park
Topping off our list of best MLB ballparks is none other than Petco Park, home of the San Diego Padres.
The Padres home field came in at No. 1 for several reasons. First, the park scored 18 out 20 possible points for its accessibility. Whether fans are driving or using public transportation, there are several ways to get to the park, including the Gaslamp Quarter Station, which is right across the street from Petco Park. And in terms of the atmosphere, the Padres rank No. 2 for the largest average home game attendance. Last season, 92% of home games were at capacity, according to ESPN attendance data.
The Padres also have the 8th most affordable general admission ticket in the league ($27.44). But what really sets Petco Park apart from the other ballparks is its pre- and post-game dining options. Overall, there are more than 500 bars and restaurants within a one-mile radius of the park, which is more than any other park on the list.
#2. Colorado Rockies: Coors Field
We head to the Mile High City for the second-best ballpark on our list.
Along with offering fans an incredible backdrop of the Rocky Mountains, Coors Field has plenty to provide baseball fans, including the 5th cheapest general admission ticket in the league ($25.51), the cheapest beer ($3.00), more than 470 bars and restaurants within walking distance as well as an average Google and Yelp score of 4.4 out of 5.
#3. San Francisco Giants: Oracle Park
It’s back to California for the third best ballpark in America.
Similar to Coors Field, Oracle Park also offers picturesque views for fans to take in during a game. The park is also tied with Petco Park in San Diego for accessibility (18 out of 20 points) and it ranks No. 3 on our list for the most bars and restaurants within walking distance (more than 480).
#4. Minnesota Twins: Target Field
Coming in at No. 4 is Target Field in Minneapolis. The Twins home field has one of the highest average Google and Yelp reviews in the league (4.6). There are also more than 300 bars and restaurants within walking distance, which gives fans a variety of options for before and after the game.
#5. New York Yankees: Yankee Stadium
Known simply as “The Stadium” to fans, Yankee Stadium is perhaps one of the most iconic stadiums in the league. Although it’s not the original stadium, Yankee Stadium sits directly next to the site of the former park in the Bronx. While it may not be the cheapest game to see in the league (a ticket, beer, hot dog and parking will set fans back about $97.09), it still ranks within the top five on our list thanks to its high attendance percentage (85%) and plenty of options to dine and drink before or after each game.
Most Affordable MLB Ballparks: 2023
For fans strictly concerned with affordability, we also analyzed the most and least affordable MLB ballparks. Our analysis included average general admission ticket cost, beer cost, hot dog cost and parking cost for each ballpark.
The Arizona Diamondbacks offer the most affordable game in the league. Overall, a day at Chase Field will only set fans back about $43.01 for a ticket, beer, hot dog and parking.
Elsewhere, the Miami Marlins rank No. 2 ($46.27), followed by the Pittsburgh Pirates ($46.37); Detroit Tigers ($46.74) and the Cincinnati Reds ($47.21).
If you’re in search of the cheapest beer, head over to Coors Field in Denver, where the average beer cost is only $3. The Los Angeles Dodgers rank No. 2 for cheapest beer ($4.50), followed by The Arizona Diamondbacks ($4.99); St. Louis Cardinals ($5) and the Atlanta Braves ($5).
Least Affordable MLB Ballparks: 2023
It’s probably no surprise that some of the most iconic ballparks are also the most expensive.
Overall, Boston’s Fenway Park ranks No. 1 for the most expensive. A day at Fenway will set fans back $100.74. Fenway is followed by Wrigley Field ($100.42); Yankee Stadium ($97.09); Nationals Park ($90.15) and Oracle Park ($83.74).
When it comes to beer prices, you’ll have to reach fairly deep into your pockets during a New York Mets game. A beer at Citi Field is about $12. The second most expensive beer in the league can be found at a Chicago White Sox game ($10.75), followed by the Chicago Cubs ($10.49); Baltimore Orioles ($10.00) and the Philadelphia Phillies ($9.99).
In order to identify the best MLB ballparks in America, we analyzed key categories, including affordability, accessibility, environment and fan feedback. We evaluated these categories using 10 metrics. Each metric was graded on a 100-point scale. We then determined each ballpark’s weighted average across all metrics in order to calculate its overall score.
Affordability – 25 points
Average Ticket Price (general admission): 10 points
Average Beer Price: 5 points
Average Hot Dog Price: 5 points
Average Parking Price: 5 points
Accessibility – 20 points
Parking Garages/Lots: 10 points
Public Transportation (train, metro, trolley, buses, bike sharing): 10 points
Environment – 45 points
Average Home Game Attendance Percentage (2021-2022 season): 25 points
Bars and Restaurants (within one-mile radius of ballpark): 20 points
Fan Feedback – 10 points
Google Rating: 5 points
Yelp Rating: 5 points
Sources: Yelp, Google Ratings, ESPN, Team Marketing Report FanCostIndex
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