Coors Field – Colorado Rockies

by | Sep 28, 2018 | Meg Minard, MLB | 0 comments

Fanfare Score

Total Score
4.57

Crowd Score

Total Score
4.29

 

 

Twentieth & Blake

Coors Field is the home of the Colorado Rockies of the National League West division of MLB (Major League Baseball).  Coors Field celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2015.  Still a new stadium, yes?  Even so, it is the third oldest National League ballpark in MLB only being built after Wrigley Field (1914) and Dodgers Stadium (1962) and before all the other current National League baseball parks.   The stadium is a similar architecture of Camden Yards with the red brick and the green seats.  Coors Field was the first stadium where outfield seats were placed facing towards the infield (it was an innovative idea at the time).

Even though it is ‘old,’ it is a great ballpark to visit, as is the city of Denver.   For those ballpark chasers, a light rail train now travels from DIA Airport to downtown making it a bit easier to visit Coors Field.

The Rockies celebrated their 25th anniversary during the 2018 season.  The team celebrated with the fans in a variety of different ways:  25th anniversary t-shirt and jersey giveaways throughout the season, former Rockies players getting special recognition, an All-Time 25 team voted by the fans showed at a game in mid-June against the Marlins (who are also celebrating their 25th anniversary), and more.

The sole visit to the World Series for the Rockies was in 2007 where they magically won 21 of their last 22 games to get to the postseason and the city of Denver may just have changed its colors from Broncos orange to Rockies purple for those few weeks.

Food & Beverage 5

A wide variety of food and beverage are available at Coors Field; the better offerings are on the first level.  As expected, prices have increased over the years.

Except for the Rocky Mountain Oysters (which I wouldn’t recommend – look it up), there is no signature food item.  Plenty of specialty items are available such as carnitas, Denver cheesesteaks, Famous Dave’s BBQ, sausage on a stick, foot long bratwurst, Extreme Dogs ($6.50) and more.  Wazee Market near section 137 offers Italian specialties like pizza and gelato.  Traditional fare is also available throughout the stadium:  nachos, hot dogs, burgers, bratwurst and range from $4.75 – $7.50 with combos (fries) from $9.50 – $11.50.

#17 Helton Burger Shack (named after the Rockies long time first baseman) located on the left field concourse behind section 153 provides a Helton burger, fries, onion rings, shakes ($5.25 – $7.50) and a combo that includes a burger, shake, fries/onion rings, and drink for $14.  Healthy food offerings are mostly on the first level and include salads, wraps, veggie burgers and pizza, and gluten free items ($7 – $9.50).  Chicken sandwiches are offered at concessions on all three levels.

Buckaroos (a concession stand on the lower level concourse in left field) offers a kids meal for just $5 and is worth checking out when visiting with children.   A small kid’s play area is near the Buckaroos stand.

Coca-Cola is the soda provider at Coors Field and drinks run $4.50 – $6.25.   Plenty of alcohol choices are available in the stadium with regular domestic draft beers (more than just Coors) at $7.25 and a souvenir draft at $8.50.  Bombers (24 oz) are $10 – $12.50.  Craft beers are available at many concession stands.  New in 2018, a Hop Valley beer stand (from Eugene, OR) is on the left field concourse.  This is the place to visit if an IPA advocate.

The Sandlot Brewery, which first brewed the now popular Blue Moon beer, is across from sections 114 and 115 down the first base concourse.  Even better, it brews and offers a variety of specialty beers.  The Rooftop (upper right field deck) features bar and food establishments.  The Mountain Ranch Bar & Grille located on the second level in the right field corner is open to all fans; reservations are recommended.

Outside food and beverages are allowed inside Coors Field; there are plenty of vendors offering their fares as you walk to the stadium.   I recommend stopping by Joel’s hot dog / sausage cart at the corner of Wyncoop St and 19th St.  He offers mouth-watering hot dogs (beef and turkey – $2), sausages (spicy Italian, bratwurst, polish – $4) as well as chips, peanuts, water, and soda.   All items he sells can be brought in to the stadium and at a much more affordable price than inside.

Atmosphere 4

Coors Field provides three seating levels plus the Rockpile and the Rooftop.  The second level is the club level and entrance to that is only available to those with tickets to the 200 level.  A superb feature of Coors Field is the ability to walk around all concourse areas (except the club level).  Plenty of drink rails surround the first level where fans can stand and watch the game.

The Rockpile is the bleacher section of Coors Field and sits way beyond center field.  If you want to get into the stadium for cheap ($4), these are the tickets to get (though you won’t get a close up view of the game).  Those who are 12 and under or 55+ can get a ticket to the Rockpile for $1 on game day.  Can’t beat getting into the ballpark for a buck!

A Rooftop area in the upper-level, right field seating was constructed in 2014.  If attending a game with friends is more for the socializing than watching the game, this is the perfect place.  This has been the biggest renovation success in Coors Field as the area is always populated and crowded.  It is a standing room only area though fans with Rooftop tickets can sit in sections U310-U314 on a first come, first served basis.

The upper level first base side seats and the Rooftop get the best view of the Rocky Mountains.  During the spring and in the fall, the first base side gets the warm sun; when summer is in its prime in June, July and August choose the third base side as that gets the shade first.

Be sure to head up to the 20th row of the third level and sit in the purple seats which are exactly one mile above sea level.

A new scoreboard / video board was installed beginning the 2018 season.  The top features a mountain cutout reminiscent of the team’s mountain logo.  The video replays are vivid, clear, and crisp and lots of stats are displayed.  Even though it is twice the size of the previous scoreboard, it is still difficult to read some of the stats without binoculars.  Perhaps I’m just getting old.  For those who keep score, they do provide pitch count and pitch speed on the ribbon boards but it’s hard to keep track of as it is constantly being flipped between the two and immediately goes away once the inning ends to display a sponsor’s advertisement.

The volume level of the music has decreased making it a bit easier to converse with friends.  And, the PA announcer tries his best to call player changes when music is not blaring so loud so half the time now one can hear the changes.  It’s excellent to see that improvement.

Neighborhood 5

Coors Field sits in the LoDo (lower downtown) area of Denver.  It was the catalyst behind the revamping of the rundown warehousing area of Denver in the early 1990’s.  Now, restaurants, bars, shops, hotels, and train stations pepper the area surrounding the stadium giving a fan a multitude of things to see and do when visiting.  It is a safe area in which to walk but like any major city be cautious.

If you’re a hop head, several breweries are within walking distance of the park:  Wynkoops, Great Divide, Breckenridge, Jagged Mountain (if you like IPAs, this is the place to visit).  The Falling Rock Tap House (a block from the stadium) is known for having over 75 beers on tap and a mammoth array of bottled beer.

The National Ballpark Museum, recognized as one of the finest ballpark collections in the world, is a block from Coors Field on Blake St and is a recommended stop for those visiting the ballpark.  Check their site for hours of operation as it is not always open.

Take a stroll or a free bus ride just a few blocks away on the 16th Street Mall.  The Mall is a pedestrian shopping/eating area four blocks from Coors Field.  It has locally owned shops and over 50 restaurants along its 1.2 mile strip.

Union Station (Denver’s transportation hub) recently underwent an extensive renovation and now hosts the historic terminal building, bars, restaurants, retail shops, and the upscale Crawford Hotel and of course the light rail, Amtrak, and is a bus depot.

Since the park is right downtown, several pricey hotels are nearby with the more affordable (but by no means inexpensive) probably the Hotel Indigo Denver Downtown.

Fans 3

Denver is definitely a football town and all other sports in the area seem to fall short of the Broncos (champions of 2016 Super Bowl 50).  Though Rockies fans are plentiful and there is a solid season ticket fan base, most fans at the game are there for the entertainment and not so much the ball game.  They applaud and boo when appropriate.  They ‘make noise’ more or less when the video board tells them to.

Average attendance in 2018 is 37,026, a 73% capacity rate, which makes Rockies attendance in the upper 10 MLB teams.

Visiting fans can feel comfortable and safe wearing their teams gear and cheering on their team at a Rockies game.

Access 5

There are five gates to enter the stadium.  Gates A (Rockpile/bleachers) and E (left field) open two hours before game time.  The other gates open one and a half hours before the first pitch, so there is plenty of time to check out the stadium.  Except for the club level, a fan can visit all areas of the venue including the Rooftop (on the third level) and walk the entire first level concourse.

Taking the light rail to the stadium is an excellent option.  It stops at Union Station just a few blocks from the venue.   Be aware, it can get crowded after the game and there may be some wait time.

An A Line train from DIA (Denver International Airport) runs direct to Union Station. So fans who want to visit Coors Field and downtown Denver won’t necessarily require a car rental anymore.  Gate E (left field) offers a claim check/tent area in case luggage needs to be stored.

For those who prefer to drive, there are two main parking lots (Lots A and B) off of Park Ave for $17 – $19, with shuttle service offered from Lot B.  Other offsite parking is available throughout the downtown area and can range from $15 and up depending on the game and the opponent.

Getting through security is generally painless.  Re-entry is allowed; be sure to get your hand and ticket stamped before exiting.

Return on Investment 5

Attending a Rockies game is an exceptional value.  All kinds of ticket offers are available:

  • Rockpile (bleacher) tickets are $4 and for those 55+ or 12 and under, $1 tickets can be purchased game day for the Rockpile
  • The Rooftop area tickets start at $15 (includes a $6 credit for merchandise/food)
  • When purchasing more than $25 in groceries, King Soopers (local grocery store chain) offers up to four tickets at $19 each in select areas of the stadium. Check your receipt.
  • A Coca-Cola value pack is available for certain games, is $59 (upper level) or $79 (lower level) and includes four tickets, four hot dogs, four sodas, a parking pass and a magazine
  • Check <a href=” http://m.mlb.com/col/tickets/info/ticket-specials” target=”_blank”>here</a> for more Rockies ticket specials.

Taking the light rail and being able to bring in your own food and beverage certainly helps reduce the expense of a ball game at Coors Field.

Extras 4

The Rockies have three retired ‘numbers’: Todd Helton (17), Jackie Robinson (42), Keli McGregor (KSM) located on the panel in center field above the bullpen.   Keli McGregor was the President of the Rockies who passed away too early.   Other banners of famed Rockies and notable references adorn the concourses.

Stadium tours are available year round and are definitely recommended.  Check the Rockies website for days and times.

There is a beautiful batter’s eye area with water fountains, a pond and landscaping.

Exceptionally fast, free Wi-Fi is available.

Kudo’s to the Rockies organization for continuing to improve the casual fan’s experience and entertainment and making it an affordable afternoon/evening out for all.

Final Thoughts

In spring 2018, the Colorado Rockies secured a 99-year lease for a parking lot space at 19th and Wazee Streets (left field entrance to the ballpark). The plans are to construct a mixed-used outdoor plaza entertainment complex and include a Rockies hall of fame, restaurants, a hotel, offices, and residences all focused on baseball. This will be comparable to the Baseball Village near the Busch Stadium (St Louis Cardinals) and The Battery at SunTrust Park (Atlanta Braves).

The players on the field have been fun to watch this 2018 season and the ballpark is still a remarkable venue to visit. If you haven’t been in a while, it may be time for a return visit, especially with the new airport RTD access and the new entertainment complex just beginning its development.

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Food and Drink Recommendations

Breckenridge Brewery

471 Kalamath St

Denver, CO 80204

(303) 623-2739

http://www.breckbrew.com/


Wynkoop Brewery

1634 18th St

Denver, CO 80202

(303) 297-2700

https://www.wynkoop.com/


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Entertainment Recommendations

Denver Art Museum

100 West 14th Avenue Parkway

Denver, CO 80204

(720) 865-5000

http://www.denverartmuseum.org


National Ballpark Museum

1940 Blake St

Denver, CO 80202

(303) 974-5835

http://www.ballparkmuseum.com/


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Lodging Recommendations

 

Hotel Indigo Denver Downtown

1801 Wewatta St

Denver, CO 80202

(303) 623-4422

https://www.ihg.com/hotelindigo/hotels/us/en/denver/denws/hoteldetail


 

The Crawford Hotel

1701 Wynkoop St

Denver, CO 80202

(720) 460-3700

http://www.thecrawfordhotel.com/


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Crowd Reviews

Latest Crowd Reviews

Date: 2018-09-28 09:17:37
By: Legacy Review

Total Score
4.43

Even though it is ‘old,’ it is a great ballpark to visit

Date: 2018-02-19 13:55:22
By: Marc Viquez

Total Score
3.86

A cool ballpark in Denver. If you visit, make sure you try the Rocky Mountain Oysters and bring a jacket, it gets cold at night in town.

Date: 2017-12-15 13:13:09
By: tejasduck4

Total Score
4.43

Coors Field is one of the top ballpark experiences in MLB.

Date: 2017-10-11 02:40:19
By: Meg Minard

Total Score
4.43

This is still a great venue in which to watch a baseball game. Expected improvements for the 2018 season include a new scoreboard, upgraded control room technology (to better operate equipment for the scoreboard, music, and in-game entertainment), speaker enhancements, and all kinds of celebrations for the 25th anniversary season of Coors Field.

Stadium Info

Coors Field
2001 Blake St
Denver, CO 80205

Colorado Rockies website
Coors Field website

Year Opened: 1995
Capacity: 50,480

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